Family members fear for safety of hijacked ship crew

Kolkata, July 17: Urging the Ministry of External Affairs to take urgent steps to bring back crew members of Turkish oil-chemical tanker hijacked off the coast of West African nation Gabon, family members of the captain today said they were worried for the safety of the crew.

"We are worried about the safety of my father and other crew members. Since last Sunday we couldn't establish any contact with father," Richa Wahi, daughter of Shishir Wahi, the captain of the ship, said.

Shishir Wahi is a resident of the Alipore area of Kolkata. "Our well wishers and company officials are in touch with the MEA. We hope they will take the required steps to bring back all the crew members," Richa said.

MV Cotton, an oil tanker ship with 24 Indian crew on board, has been hijacked by suspected pirates off the coast of Gabon. The Malta-flagged vessel was taken over by suspected pirates 15 miles off the Gentil Port between 0100 hrs and 0200 hrs local time Monday, a statement from V Ships, the crew manager for the vessel owned by a Turkish company, had said.

Officials at the Directorate General of Shipping confirmed the incident but said they are awaiting further details. Company officials did not confirm if any demand for ransom had been made by the suspected sea brigands.


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