21 May


Sailors' Society signs Gulf of Guinea Declaration on Suppression of Piracy

21 May, 2021

As piracy attacks continue to rise in the Gulf of Guinea, with 95 per cent of global kidnapping incidents occurring in the region last year, Sailors' Society's CEO Sara Baade explains why we’ve joined with more than 150 other maritime organisations to sign the Gulf of Guinea Declaration on Suppression of Piracy.

Each and every one of us deserves the right to be able to carry out our work without fear of violence. And seafarers are no different.

Yet for hundreds of thousands of crew, the threat of piracy attack or kidnapping is very real.

In 2020, when the world was largely in lockdown, the International Maritime Bureau Piracy Reporting Centre received 195 reports of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide, in comparison to 162 in 2019 – a rise mainly attributed to an increase in attacks and kidnappings in the Gulf of Guinea. Astonishingly, 135 crew were kidnapped from their ships last year, with 95 per cent of incidents taking place in this one small area of waters.

Seafarers deserve to be able to work safely and without the constant threat of attack or being held at gunpoint. Through our years of experience working with survivors of piracy and kidnapping, we’ve seen the devastating impact that incidents of piracy can have on survivors and their families.

That’s why, along with more than 150 other companies and organisations including flag state administrations, ship owners, charterers, and shipping associations, we’ve signed the Gulf of Guinea Declaration on Suppression of Piracy

Drafted by a taskforce convened by international shipping association BIMCO, the Gulf of Guinea Declaration demands that no seafarer should face the risks of kidnapping and violence in the Gulf of Guinea and calls on all stakeholders to jointly end the threat, including by tangibly supporting antipiracy law enforcement.

To find out more and to view the declaration visit: https://www.bimco.org/GoGDeclaration

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