- The Washington Times - Friday, October 25, 2013

The president of an oil transportation company said Friday morning that the two Americans who were seized by pirates off the coast of Nigeria are probably safe and not likely facing much danger.

“I’m sure their lives are really not at risk,” said James Christodoulou, president of Angelmar Corp, during a sit-down interview to discuss the hostage situation on “Fox & Friends.”

He was referring to the two Americans who were abducted from their U.S.-flagged oil platform supply vessel at gunpoint on Wednesday, as they traveled in the Gulf of Guinea. The two have been identified as the captain and the chief engineer.

Details about their condition — or the condition of their crew and ship — aren’t clear, CNN reported. But The Associated Press reported that rebels in the Niger Delta say they’ve opened lines of communication with the kidnappers, while Nigerian naval officials say they’ve launched a search.

Meanwhile, Mr. Christodoulou — who’s experienced a similar pirate abduction of his workers in recent times, and ultimately paid the requested ransom to buy their freedom — said that danger aside, the two Americans are probably doing fine.

“They’re businessmen,” he said, of the pirates. “These are not fanatics.” He also said that the pirates took Americans probably because “they were higher value targets,” Fox News reported.