BUSINESS

Greek-owned tanker returned after hijackers allegedly steal $8 mln worth of diesel

An oil tanker hijacked for a week off Angola in January has been returned to the country’s authorities, a board member at state oil firm Sonangol said on Tuesday, adding that the hijackers had stolen diesel worth $8 million from the ship.

The Liberian-flagged MT Kerala was under a time charter contract for Sonangol when it vanished off the coast of the capital Luanda on January 18 before being intercepted by the Nigerian navy a week later.

The incident has sparked a row between the Angolan government, which accused the crew of disabling the ship’s communications to fake a pirate attack, and the vessel’s Greek owners, who said pirates hijacked the vessel and stole a large quantity of cargo. [Reuters]

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