Hijacked Oil Tanker Arrives in Ivory Coast after Pirates Steal Petroleum

Photo : YONHAP News

An oil tanker carrying South Korean sailors that was hijacked by pirates and then freed in waters off West Africa has safely arrived at Ivory Coast.

According to Seoul's foreign ministry, the four-thousand-ton tanker, B Ocean, detained by pirates some 370 kilometers south of Ivory Coast, has been towed to the port of Abidjan in the African nation early Saturday, nine days after the hijack.

Contact with the tanker was lost in the morning of November 24 and resumed around noon the following day after the pirates got off the ship. The pirates reportedly stole three thousand tons of petroleum and destroyed the vessel's equipment.

All nineteen crew members including 17 Indonesian and two South Koreans including the captain were confirmed to be safe. 

A foreign ministry official said that discussions will be held jointly with the fisheries ministry to devise measures to ensure the safety of not only South Korean ships but also those carrying Korean nationals.