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African Leaders Will Meet in Togo to Discuss Maritime Piracy

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Coast guard officers stand guard in a boat during a patrol, at the port in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Lome – African leaders will meet later this year in Togo to discuss drawing up a continental charter against maritime piracy, the country’s authorities have announced.

Foreign minister Robert Dussey said on Tuesday night that heads of state and government from the African Union would be in the capital Lomé in November to discuss the problem.

“The Lomé summit aims at defining a common strategy against maritime insecurity in Africa,” Dussey told reporters.

“At least 205 attacks on ships were registered in the Gulf of Guinea between 2005 and May 2015. Togo’s coasts saw eight attacks, of which seven were foiled by the country’s navy.”

The minister said the successful adoption of Africa’s first ever strategy against pirates would be put before the United Nations Security Council.

At present, only a handful of national, bilateral and regional initiatives are in place to fight piracy, which has taken off in West Africa in recent years.

Unlike in east Africa, where pirates have demanded ransoms, pirates in the Gulf of Guinea generally steal cargo, especially oil.


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