Pinoy sailor on ship seized by Iran

A FILIPINO was among the 23 crew members of a UK-registered vessel seized by Iran authorities in the Strait of Hormuz.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said it is actively monitoring developments as it received reports that United Kingdom-registered MT Stena Impero was seized by Iranian authorities on the evening of July 19 while transiting the Strait of Hormuz.

Onboard the vessel were 23 crewmembers — 18 Indians, three Russians, a Latvian and a Filipino.

According to Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs Sarah Lou Y. Arriola, the manning agency said there were no reported injuries.

The vessel was heading to the coast of Iran when seized.

Ambassador to Iran Fred Santos is contacting Iranian authorities to seek assurance that the Filipino seafarer is safe and will be released soon.

The Philippine-based manning agency immediately informed the Filipino seafarer’s next of kin, and is providing the necessary assistance, while its foreign counterpart is in active coordination with UK authorities on the whereabouts of the ship and the condition of the seafarers on board.

MT Stena Impero was reportedly boarded by unidentified intruders following an approach by small crafts and a helicopter while transiting the Strait of Hormuz in international waters.

Authorities were unable to contact the vessel which is now heading north towards Iran.