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Crew members of the stranded MV Azraqmoiah are awaiting rescue off the coast of the UAE.

PHOTO BY AYAPPAN SWAMINATHAN


10 sailors stranded off UAE coast await rescue

 

DUBAI – For nearly two years, ten sailors have been stranded off the UAE coast due to an ongoing legal dispute involving the shipping company they work for.

The men—eight Indian, a Sudanese and Tanzanian—are caught in limbo onboard the vessel MV Azraqmoiah. Some waiting to be paid 17-month’s worth of salaries, The National reported.

The ship has been anchored off the Umm al Quwain coast since February 21, 2018. Strong winter winds have delayed the rescue of the men, who said they are running out of food.

The crew members also said their company owes them a total of more than $250,000 (Dh920,000) in wages.

A government-appointed official will be boarding the ship, once the weather improves, to take statements from the crew and begin the repatriation process.

Meanwhile, the crew members said they are surviving on Arabic bread, rice, dhal, tea and sugar and have continued working four-hour ships daily to maintain their routine.

They use an emergency generator in the ship to supply power for cooking and air-conditioning.

Currently, the Federal Transport Authority, the Mission to Seafarer’s charity and embassies of India, Sudan and Tanzania have been working to help repatriate the men.

The International Seafarers Welfare and Assistance Network and the MtS charity have reportedly raised nearly Dh150,000 to help pay for the men’s repatriation. GAD/Expat Media

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