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Hijacked ship MV Abdullah

Sailors facing fresh water crunch

Suffering from skin diseases

Published : 06 Apr 2024 11:14 PM

Abducted sailors aboard hijacked MV Abdullah are suffering from skin diseases.

Even though there are adequate food supplies for the hostages, they are facing an acute shortage of fresh water.

Shamsuddin, a staff member on MV Abdullah, described the situation of his colleagues on Saturday.

He, however, said that the sailors are somehow managing to survive despite the adversities.

Badrul Islam, brother-in-law of Shamsuddin, said that he (Shamsuddin) communicates with them almost every day, assuring them of their wellbeing.

Water rationing is in place to ensure the stored water lasts, and sailors are only able to shower once or twice a week. Moreover, the ship has run out of first aid kits.

In addition to these challenges, armed pirates remain vigilant day and night. However, due to the prolonged captivity, a rapport has developed between the sailors and the pirates.

As a result, sailors are no longer subjected to the same level of abuse as before and are allowed to stay in their cabins. They also continue to carry out regular ship duties.

Concerns loom over the sailors' release from captivity. Family members have reached out to SR Shipping officials, who have assured them of ongoing efforts to secure the sailors' release. Atiq U A Khan, captain of a seagoing commercialvessel, disclosed that most sailors aboard MV Abdullah are afflicted with skin diseases with no access to medical prescriptions.

He highlighted the acute shortage of fresh water, which is available only twice a week, necessitating the use of seawater during other times.

MV Abdullah, owned by SR Shipping under Kabir Group, was transporting 55,000 tons of coal from Mozambique to Hamriyah port in the United Arab Emirates. 

However, it fell into the hands of pirates in the Indian Ocean on March 12. Built in 2016, MV Abdullah is one of 24 vessels under SR Shipping, formerly known as Golden Hawk before changing ownership last year.