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MV Abdullah’s 23 sailors reunited with families

Being freed from the captivity of Somali pirates, 23 Bangladeshi sailors of ‘MV Abdullah’ cargo ship returned to Chattogram Port and reunited with their families on Tuesday (May 14).

They returned to their respective relatives at 4:00pm on Tuesday at New Mooring Terminal of the port after one month of their release. They arrived from Kutubdia by ‘MV Jahan Moni-3’ literage vessel. From there the 23 crew returned to their respective homes.
The Bangladesh-flagged ship ‘MV Abdullah’ finally reached Kutubdia in Cox’s Bazar after two months.

Earlier on Monday (May 13) evening, ‘MV Abdullah’ anchored at Kutubdia. As the ship was large in both length and height, it had no scope to anchor at the jetty. Meanwhile, a new group of 23 sailors went to Kutubdia from Chattogram and took charge of the ship. Handing over the responsibilities to the new sailors, the sailors finally freed from their long ordeal. Then the freed sailors arrived at the jetty of Chattogram Port by MV Jahan Moni, another cargo ship of KSRM Group which came from Indonesia.

Though MV Abdullah was freed by the pirates about a month ago, the relatives of the sailors could not meet their near and dear ones. It was for the first time, they saw and met their relatives for the first time on Tuesday.

The ship owned by KSRM Group was hijacked by Somali pirates from the Indian Ocean early in the afternoon on March 12 last when it was going to the UAE with coal on board from Maputu Port of Mozambique. The pirates held the sailors hostage inside a cabin at gunpoint. After hijacking, the pirates took the ship to Somalia’s coast. Then a settlement was reached through the mediation of the owner of MV Abdullah. Receiving the ransom, the pirates got down from the ship at about 3:08 am [Bangladesh time] on April 13 last. After 33 days, the ship along with the crew was freed at night of April 13. The ship, built in 2016, then went to Al-Hamriya Port in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). After unloading goods there, the ship loaded limestone from another port and left for Chattogram. The bulk carrier which is 189.93 meter in length and 32.25 in height, arrived in the waters of Bangladesh at Kutibdia after 13 days from the UAE.

The ship with the new team on board, carrying 56,000 tons of limestone, first offloaded some limestone to literage vessel at Kutubdia. The new 23 sailors then brought the ship near Patenga, where the remaining cargo will be unloaded.

On March 12 last, MV Abdullah, carrying 55,000 tonnes of coal from Mozambique to Dubai, was hijacked by Somali pirates, along with 23 of its sailors on board the ship.

Subsequently, the ship along with the 23 crew was freed after payment of a ransom to the pirates on April 14.

It was the second time that pirates hijacked a Bangladeshi ship.

Earlier in 2010, the same company’s MV Jahan Moni ship was hijacked by Somali pirates. At that time, 26 people were on board, including 25 crew and the captain’s wife.

They were rescued and brought back to the country with the ship after 100 days.

The freed crew members are ‘MV Abdullah’ ship’s master Captain Abdur Rashid, chief officer Atique Ullah Khan, second officer Mozaherul Islam Chowdhury, third officer Mohammad Tarequl Islam, deck cadet Sabbir Hossain, chief engineer ASM Saiduzzaman, second engineer Toufiqul Islam, third engineer Md Rukon Uddin, fourth engineer Tanvir Ahmed and engine cader Ayub Khan.

Other sailors are Ibrahim Khalil Ullah, Sazzad Hossain, Anwarul Huque, Asif Ur Rahim, Joy Mahmud, Nazmul Huque, Ali Hossain, Mohammad Shamsuddin, Ainul Islam, Mosharraf Hossain Shakil, Mohammad Saleh Ahmed, Shafiqul Islam and Mohammad Noor Uddin.