- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 24, 2013

Pirates have kidnapped the captain and chief engineer — both Americans — from an oil supply ship as it passed through a point off Nigeria’s coastline, a defense spokesman said on Thursday.

The identities of the Americans haven’t yet been released. Other media called them sailors, but it’s not clear if they were sailors affiliated with the U.S. military.

The C-Retriever is owned by the U.S. marine transport group Edison Chouest Offshore and was attacked Wednesday, an official with the security firm AKE said in Reuters. The U.S. State Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have kicked off a rescue mission.

A small U.S. Marine Corps training unit in the region could be summoned to respond, too, Reuters said.

U.S. officials told NBC that officials are working under the belief the two Americans are being held for ransom.

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