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Marcos vows safety of 17 Pinoy seafarers held captive by Yemen rebels
Marcos vows safety of 17 Pinoy seafarers held captive by Yemen rebels
Nation
Marcos vows safety of 17 Pinoy seafarers held captive by Yemen rebels
by Christhel Cuazon23 November 2023
The Galaxy Leader cargo ship is escorted by Houthi boats in the Red Sea in this photo released November 20, 2023. Houthi Military Media/Handout via REUTERS

President Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr. on Wednesday said the national government is working to ensure the safety of the 17 Filipino seafarers who were among the held hostages by Yemen's Houthi rebel in the Red Sea.

In a statement, Marcos said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is currently coordinating with its counterparts in Iran, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia for updates, while the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) is in regular communication with the families of the hostages.

"The safety of our 17 Filipino seafarers is of utmost concern," the President said.

“Our seafarers are not alone. The government is doing everything in our power to bring them safely home," he continued.

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In a message to DZRH, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Eduardo de Vega confirmed the reports that 17 Filipino seafarers were among the 25 hostages held by rebels on Sunday.

The Bahamas-flagged, British-owned Galaxy Leader, with links to Israeli businessman Abraham “Rami” Ungar, is operated by a Japanese firm.

In a statement, the DMW assured the families of the seafarers of the government’s support and assistance.

The United States, which called for the immediate release of the ship and its crew, said it was considering designating Houthi rebels a terrorist organization following the Red Sea incident.

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