Pirates Release FWN Rapide Crew Members Kidnapped Off Nigeria

FWN Rapide
MV FWN Rapide. File Photo: MarineTraffic.com / Ria Maat

Pirates have released eleven hostages kidnapped from a Dutch cargo ship off the coast of Nigeria last month. 

Their release was confirmed Wednesday by ship manager ForestWave. 

The hostages were crew members of the FWN Rapide, which was attacked by pirates April 21 as it was nearing Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

Two additional crew members escaped the kidnapping and steered the vessel to a safe location after the pirates disembarked with the hostages. Another crew member was found safe hiding on board the vessel some two days following the attack. 

ForestWave are delighted to report that our eleven valued crew members who were taken hostage on April 21 off Port Harcourt, Nigeria and spent the last 4 weeks in captivity have been released and are now safe,” the company said in a statement issued Wednesday. “The crew are currently on their way to be reunited with their loved ones. We are extremely pleased to have been conveying this good news to all the families and friends of our seafarers.”

All eleven crew members are in a relatively good condition, the company said. 

“ForestWave would like to thank all the relevant authorities and advisors for their help in securing the release of our valued seafarers. Finally we would like to express our gratitude to our crew who have shown such great courage and professionalism under the extremely difficult circumstances of the past four weeks,” the company added. 

AIS ship tracking data showed the FWN Rapide as sailing from Takoradi, Ghana to Bonny, Nigeria when the attack took place.