World Bulletin / News Desk
The navies of Ghana, Nigeria and Togo are conducting search operations for a Liberian-flagged oil tanker that disappeared off the coast of Ghana last week.
"Initial reports said the ship was in Ghanaian waters; other reports said in Togolese waters," acting Director of Public Affairs for the Ghana Armed Forces Lt. Col Aggrey Quashie told Anadolu Agency on Monday.
"To be frank, if you are dealing with Togo, you are in effect dealing with Nigeria, so we are in collaboration and sharing information," he added.
"We are looking within the whole sub-region, so everybody is searching within their territorial waters to see if they can find something," said Quashie.
There are fears that the Liberia-flagged MT Fair Artemis might have been captured by pirates operating in the Gulf of Guinea.
"For now, I cannot confirm that," said the army spokesperson. "I would not want to speculate on anything until the vessel is found."
"Let's get the vessel and then we will know from the people on board exactly what happened," said Quashie.
He could not provide any immediate information regarding the size of the lost tanker's crew.
The oil tanker is thought to have made its last contact with its managers, Fairdeal Group S.A., at 6pm Wednesday.
Ghana has two major seaports: one at Tema, east of Accra, and another in the city of Takoradi in the Western Region, where the country operates a substantial offshore oil industry.
Paul Asare Ansah, head of public relations at the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority, said it would be bad news for Ghana if it turned out that the ship had been captured by pirates.
"One of our strengths is the fact that our territorial waters are very secure… and this [an incident of piracy] will reflect on the attitude of the international shipping community towards our port," he told AA.
"We maintain the security of our anchorage, so that is secured because we have obtained patrol boats and we regularly patrol those areas together with the navy and the maritime police," said the official.
"So we can renew assurance of safety and security in our ports and its environment," he added.
Ansah went on to say that – as far as piracy was concerned – Africa's West Coast had become more dangerous even than the coast of Somalia.
A Korean fishing vessel was recently hijacked off the coast of Ghana. It was later spotted inside Nigerian territorial waters.
Kamal Deen, an expert in maritime law and security, described the hijacking as "another major indication that the maritime security environment in the Gulf of Guinea is becoming a threat."
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the agreement was reached at a fresh talks between the two sides.
‘I won’t negotiate over Al-Aqsa Mosque,’ resistance icon Raed Salah declares after release from prison
Jammeh argues state of emergency will prevent constitutional crisis and avoid power vacuum
Foreign minister says inviting representatives of new US administration to Astana would be a "right" decision
Sheikh Raed Salah was imprisoned last year after Israeli court found him guilty of ‘inciting violence’
Seven months after the referendum to leave the EU, Brexit "still has not been formalised," said Frank-Walter Steinmeier in a statement.
Federal judges say NPD does not have potential to realize its anti-constitutional aims
Northern Cyprus economy minister says equal representation, presence of Turkish soldiers remain barriers to agreement
As Gambian president tries to cling to power, more ministers resign, flee to Senegal
The vote for the new chief of the EU's only elected assembly will be closely watched in European capitals, including London, as it the parliament that will have a final say on any eventual Brexit deal.
Abdelhakim Belhaj, a former fighter, later became Tripoli's military commander after Libyan dictator Moamer Kadhafi was ousted in 2011.
- ACT Airlines cargo flight from Hong Kong to Istanbul via Bishkek crashed on Monday
Center-left group leader quits, leaves path open for Italian head of center-right European People’s Party
U.S. Secretary of State critical of President-elect's media comments
Since 2013, more than 16,000 children have been recruited as soldiers, says UNICEF
According to a family statement released by NASA, Cernan, a retired naval officer, died following ongoing health issues.