Hostage situation on board Kriti II ends with arrest after special forces board ferry

A hostage situation aboard the ANEK lines passenger ferry Kriti 2, en route from Heraklion to Piraeus with 614 passengers on board, ended when men from the special operations unit of the Greek Coastguard boarded the ferry shortly before docking in Piraeus.

anek_kriti2-e1413392336341Piraeus Port Authority was informed around 3.30 a.m. that a man, holding a broken glass, was threatening to kill a woman, in the central salon of the ship.  The hostage taker, a 27 year old passenger, was not known to the woman hostage. She was as at the time of the incident asleep on one of the lounge seats next to her husband.

According to other passengers , the man suddenly started a disturbance for no apparent reason and after smashing a water glass he grabbed the woman and placing the broken glass on her throat, he threatened to kill her.

Police were immediately alerted to the situation and were on standby as the ferry arrived at the port of Piraeus, along with a special negotiator specialized in hostage situations, though in this case the man made no demands.

Crew members evacuated other passengers from the ship’s lounge as the situation unfolded.

Men from the special operations unit of the Greek coastguard who boarded the ferry before reaching Piraeus managed  to disarm and arrest the attacker. According to news reports, a rubber bullet was fired.

The attacker was then transferred to the central Port Authority just before 7:00 when the ferry docked. According to eye witnesses reports, he claimed to be in a drugs rehabilitation program  and police took  blood samples to run tests.

The woman hostage bore minor injuries in the throat and was taken to the hospital for checks. She was later released.

The minister for Shipping and tourism who was kept informed though the incident, congratulated  the ship’s crew and the security forces for the manner they dealt with the hostage situation.