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French Ship Seized by Pirates Off Nigeria


A French company says pirates off the coast of Nigeria have seized one of its ships and nine crew members.

The maritime services company Bourbon Monday said the Bourbon Leda was seized late Saturday or early Sunday off the southeastern Nigerian coast near Bonny in Rivers state.

A company news release says Bourbon representatives have spoken by phone with the captain, who says all the crew members are in good health.

The ship's crew includes five Nigerians, two Ghanaians, a Cameroonian and an Indonesian. The company says it is keeping their family members informed.

Most pirate attacks in African waters take place in the east, off the coast of Somalia. But piracy also has spiked in Nigeria over the last two years, mainly involving attacks on oil vessels.

The Bourbon Leda is a 155-foot ship known as a fast support and intervention vessel, designed for quick transportation of personnel and cargo. The company's Web site says Bourbon is involved in offshore work for the oil and gas industry in Nigeria.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

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