Fate of 7 Pinoy sailors uncertain as Brunei continues search ops - The Libyan Report

Fate of 7 Pinoy sailors uncertain as Brunei continues search ops

THE fate of seven Filipinos aboard a Brunei-flagged fishing vessel, Radims 2, that capsized off the coast of Brunei remains uncertain.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (Dfa) said it continues to monitor the developments.

Eleven members of the crew, seven of them Filipinos, were on board, according to a report from the Philippine Embassy in Brunei Darussalam, the official name of the tiny country located on the north coast of the island of Borneo.

The DFA said two of the crew members, whose nationalities have not been specified, have already been rescued.

“The Department of Foreign Affairs is actively monitoring developments on a report it received that a Brunei-flagged fishing vessel, Radims 2, capsized off the coast of Brunei,” the DFA said in a statement.

The report quoted Ambassador to Brunei Christopher Montero as saying they are closely coordinating with Brunei authorities for updates on Brunei’s joint search and rescue operations with Malaysia.

Per the Embassy’s Philippine Overseas Labor Office, the last communication between the vessel owner and its captain was on August 7, 2019.

Since then, Brunei’s National Search and Rescue Coordination Committee has sought assistance from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency in locating missing crew members.

No Pinoy casualty in Libya

MEANWHILE, the country’s Charge d’Affaires in Libya, Elmer Cato, reported that “no Filipinos have so far been reported to be among casualties in Benghazi car-bomb explosion.

“Still another close call at Mitiga today,” Cato reported in a tweet to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr.

Cato was referring to the bomb-laden vehicle that exploded Saturday outside a shopping mall in Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi, killing at least three United Nations staff members.

The attack came even as the country’s warring sides said they accepted a cease-fire proposed by the UN aimed at halting combat in the capital Tripoli during an upcoming Muslim holiday.

The blast took place outside Arkan Mall in the Hawari neighborhood, where people were gathering for shopping a day before the Eid al-Adha holiday begins. The Benghazi municipal council said the attack targeted a convoy for the UN Support Mission in Libya.

The site of the attack is close to offices of the mission in Libya. Two of the dead hailed from Libya and Fuji, and the blast wounded nine people.

Cato said the explosion occurred near a supermarket and shops frequented by some Filipinos, including those from a nearby hospital.

“@PhinLibya is in touch with Filipino Community there,” Cato said in his official Twitter account.

In a subsequent tweet, Cato showed photographs of the Filipino’s embassy staff in Tripoli, sharing lunch in observation of the Eid Mubarak.

“It has been an annual tradition of the Philippines Libyan Embassy to host members of the Filipino Muslim Community for Eid al-Adha,” Cato said, adding for lunch, they feasted on grilled meat from the three sheep that were sacrificed that day. source