Bunga Melati Lima Freed

KUALA LUMPUR: The Bernama story below explained everything. I hope MISC have chartered a plane in Kenya to send our boys ASAP. As for the other ship’s crew, we prayed for their safe return.

Bunga Melati Lima Freed

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 28 (Bernama) — One of the two Malaysian International Shipping Corporation (MISC) tankers hijacked in the Gulf of Aden by Somali pirates has been freed, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said Sunday.

“All its crew members have been released and the vessel is now heading to Djibouti (East Africa). The crew members are all in good health.

“A medical team from the Defence Ministry comprising of doctors, medical assistants and counsellors are providing assistance to the crew,” he said after having his Aidilfitri message recorded at his official residence, Seri Perdana, here.

Abdullah, who is also Defence Minister, said negotiations to secure the release of the other tanker, the MT Bunga Melati Dua, and its crew members were ongoing.

“The negotiations are showing positive signs. It is our hope that the release of the hostages and tanker can be secured soon.

“I wish to remind the family members to remain calm. We will do all we can to ensure they return home safely,” he said.

The MT Bunga Melati Dua, with a crew of 39 — 29 Malaysian and the rest Filipinos — was hijacked in the gulf, where rampant maritime piracy is taking place, on Aug 19.

One of the Filipino crew was killed when hit by a stray bullet.

Ten days later, the MT Bunga Melati Lima, with 36 Malaysian and five Filipino crew encountered the same fate while sailing from Yanbu, Saudi Arabia to Singapore.

Malaysia sent two warships, the KD Lekiu and KD Inderapura, and an offshore patrol vessel, the KD Pahang to escort MISC ships sailing in the risky waters following the two hijacking incidents.

— BERNAMA

— Malaysian Defence

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2 Comments

  1. Bayar wang tebusan tapi malu nak kata. Paying ransoms seems to be our idea of negotiations…. be it to Abu Sayyaf or Somali pirates. Typical spin conveniently forgets to note the payment of a ransom (now called wang ehsan).

    What are we going to do to prevent further hijackings, which are bound to continue? All the money we spend on defence, sia-sia aje ke? Or are we going to hide behind the fig leaf of ‘international law and action’.

    I’m glad that some of these guys are free and that they’ll be back for Raya but I’m pessimistic about the long term effects of this.

    Simon

  2. I thought globally the idea is NOT to pay ransoms to terrorists!? The idea is if you pay ransom money to terrorists you’re just going to fund THEIR ‘defence spending’ – buying more arms, kidnapping and holding more hostages, etc.

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