16 Indian stuck in Equatorial Guinea; Kerala CM writes to PM

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his immediate intervention to help in the release of 16 Indian seafarers, who are on a Norwegian oil vessel detained by Equatorial Guinea.

The Norwegian ship ‘Heroic Idun’, which had reached the AKPO Terminal in Nigeria on August 8 to fill crude oil, was intercepted and detained by a Guinea naval ship. The 16 Indians are a part of the 26-member crew of the Norwegian oil vessel.

Vijayan stated in the letter that even though the ship did not engage in any unlawful activity, the shipping company was ready to pay the fines to facilitate the early release of the seafarers.

The chief minister requested Modi to see that the diplomatic missions were alerted and speedy action was there so that the Indian seafarers were released.

The Congress lawmakers from Kerala have also approached the Centre to see that steps were taken to see the quick release of all the Indians.

According to the sailors, who have communicated with their families, they were detained on suspicion of crude oil piracy.

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