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Pinoy crew of seized tanker in good spirits

Pinoy crew of seized tanker in good spirits
Dona Z. Pazzibugan July 29, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Embassy in Tehran has said it found the Filipino seafarer of the British-flagged oil tanker seized by Iran the other week to be “well and in good spirits.”

Embassy officials were allowed onboard the MT Stena Impero on July 26 to speak to the Filipino seafarer, one of the 23-member crew.

“The Filipino seafarer is well and in good spirits, and said that the crew are treated well and allowed free movement while inside the vessel to go about their normal duties,” said Wilfredo Santos, ambassador to Iran.

He said the Filipino seafarer also reported that the crew were allowed to communicate with their family and to access the internet “from time to time.”

Santos said the Filipino seafarer asked that his family be taken care of while their vessel was held in Iranian waters.

Embassy representatives assured him that they were working on his release.

Due to tensions between the United States and Iran, the MT Stena Impero oil tanker was seized by Iran on July 19 while transiting the Strait of Hormuz.

The vessel is currently at anchor in Hormozgan province, which is home to a major Iranian naval base fronting the Persian Gulf.

The crew included 18 Indians, three Russians and a Latvian national.