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  Saturday, June 25, 2022
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Unidentified attackers in Guinea seized the Russian oil tanker the Luchegorsk
Unidentified attackers in Guinea seized the Russian oil tanker the Luchegorsk, owned by the Maritime Shipping Company. The alarm signal came through emergency communication channels and was later confirmed by the ship’s captain, the officer on duty at the Vladivostok-based rescue coordination center told Itar-Tass. According to information available at this point, the tanker was inside Sierra Leone’s economic zone in the Atlantic 55 miles away from Freetown and 40 miles away from Conakry, when ten men armed with automatic rifles and dressed in black approached it in two boats and rose on board. They accused the captain he was in a foreign economic zone. They demanded shipping documents and license, the crew’s passports and 20,000 dollars in cash. The captain showed the location of the ship on the map and explained to the strangers their charges were wrong. After thirty minutes of talks the intruders demanded the ship should be taken to the port of Conakry for further investigation. All means of communication remained blocked all the time. The ship’s position was tracked through an alarm signals station. After the captain agreed to give away 7,000 dollars, he was allowed to contact the ship’s owner. Upon arrival in Conakry the crew’s passports and the ship’s log were taken away. The Luchegorsk oil tanker is freighted by a Swiss company. It has a crew of 20 – 19 Russian citizens and one Chinese translator. Currently the tanker is in the port of Conakry. Three armed men remain on board. Mobile telephone communication is maintained with the crew. The freighter company has hired guards on the shore to protect the ship’s interests.
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