Moscow says three Russian sailors have been taken hostage by "bandits" after an attack on a commercial ship off the western coast of Africa during the weekend.
The Foreign Ministry in Moscow said on December 1 that the sailors were "abducted and taken away to an unknown location" as a result of the attack off the coast of Benin.
It said there has been no communication with the three Russian citizens since the attack on the refrigerated cargo ship Saronic Breeze on November 27.
Moscow says the ship was later released and returned to port in Cotonou, Benin, with most of the crew, which had a total of 18 Russian and Ukrainian sailors.
It said all of the remaining crew were in good health.