Negotiation for release of crew, cargo vessel on: NUSI
Mumbai (PTI): Negotiations for the safe release of crew and cargo of the vessel, MT Biscaglia, has begun a week after it was hijacked in Gulf of Aden.
The manager of the vessel, Singapore-based Ishima, a ship management company, has appointed a professional negotiator to talk with Somalia hijackers, National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) General Secretary Abdulgani Y Serang told PTI.
The Liberian registered cargo ship was hijacked on November 28 and has 31 crew including 25 Indians.
The ship has been anchored in Eyl, a town in Somalia, he said. This is the third ship with Indian crew that has been hijacked in Gulf of Aden in recent weeks.
Apart from 25 Indians, the ship had three Bangladeshis, two British and one Irish security guard as crew.
Its last port of call was Dumai in Indonesia. The ship was on its way to Europe via Suez Canal. An Indian naval vessel in Gulf of Aden was refuelling as scheduled at the time of hijacking of this cargo vessel.
Atleast 80 ships have been hijacked this year in Gulf of Aden and the Indian navy has deployed a warship to provide escort to Indian ships passing through the Gulf.
India has planned to send upto four naval ships in the area including a destroyer to provide escort to Indian ships.
Two other ships with Indian crew have been hijacked recently in Gulf of Aden by Somali pirates. They are Delight and Stolt Valor. Delight has seven Indian crew and Stolt Valor 18.
The crew of Stolt Valor has been released and they have returned to India last month after two months in captivity.