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Ilonggo seafarer Leonardo Flores among 17 Filipinos hostaged by Houthi rebels in Yemen

Ilonggo seafarer among 17 Filipinos hostaged by Houthi rebels in Yemen
Teresa D. Ellera Nov 24, 2023

The family of an Ilonggo seafarer is worried about his situation after it was confirmed that he is among the 17 Filipinos held captive aboard the cargo vessel Galaxy Leader hijacked by Houthi rebels in the Red Sea on November 19.

The seafarer was identified as 41-year-old Leonardo Flores, a native of Pavia town in Iloilo and currently a resident of Bacolod City in Negros Occidental.

Charlie Flores, Leonardo's brother, said in a radio interview that the whole family is worried about his safety.

He said their their mother almost fainted and their father had a stroke after hearing that his brother was among the Filipinos held captive by the Yemeni rebels.

He said that his brother worked as a seafarer for eight years now and has chosen to work abroad in order to give the family, especially Leonardo's children, a better future.

The Department of Foreign Affairs is already coordinating with its counterparts in the Middle East for the release of the Filipino hostages.


The Houthi rebels reportedly believed that the Japan-owned ship belonged to an Israeli businessman, which is why they commandeered the vessel.

The vessel was bound for the port of Pipavav in India when it was hijacked by the rebels.

The Houthis have released a statement that the ship's crew are in good health and they are being treated well in accordance with "Islamic customs."

Aside from the 17 Filipino crew members, the remaining eight crew members are from Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, and Mexico.*