Somali pirates are demanding over $5 million for the release of the MV Albedo which was hijacked about eleven months ago, the crew of the ship consists of 23 individuals including 7 Pakistanis, 7 Sri Lankans, 5 Bangladeshis, 2 Indians and an Iranian are also among the hostages. Capitan of the ship Javed Saleem belongs to Karachi, Chief Officer Mujtaba is from Manshera, Third Officer Raheel Anwar from Faisalabad, crew member Ahsan Naveed from Jhelum, Faqeer Muhammad Karachi and Fourth Engineer Zulfiqar Ali belongs to Gujrat.
I personally know Nareman Jawaid the daughter of the Captain Javed Saleem, who last saw her father over 11 months ago, her ordeal was recorded by The National
Ms Jawaid had to wait two days to simply confirm that her father’s ship had been hijacked. He had emailed her last November to tell her pirates were chasing them. She called him right away and listened as he tried to manoeuvre the ship away and calm his 22-man crew. After 10 minutes he told her the pirates were out of sight and not to worry. The next morning she emailed him to see if he was OK. He did not respond. She waited another day.
Finally she found out from the shipowner in Malaysia that the pirates had called him to say they had his ship. After that they did not call again for two weeks. Ms Jawaid thought her father had been killed. She stayed home from work. Then the pirates called to demand US$10 million (Dh36.7m). The owner said he could not pay. The MV Albedo itself – his only vessel – was not worth half that amount much, said the shipowner, Omid Khosrojerdi, speaking by phone. His company was forced to close a few months after the hijacking, though he remains involved trying to release the crew.
For three months Mr Khan’s family heard nothing. Then the captors called Mr Khan’s wife and told her he had been taken ashore. He was allowed to talk to her to confirm this. They urged her to pressure the owner to pay. A week later the pirates called to tell her they had shot him, sending her into hysterics. She tried not to believe it kept the news from her daughter. The reported death turned out to be a negotiating tactic. Three months later, the pirates called back to say the father was alive.
It important to recall that only a few months back in June, Pakistan Navy rescued the four Pakistani sailors aboard the hijacked ship MV Suez amidst a huge fanfare after paying approximately $2.1 million in ransom. The families of MV Albedo have been clambering for support from every corner of the world and finally made headway when the Sindh Governor Dr. Ishrat-ul-Ebad Khan recently sought public support, on humanitarian grounds, for release of persons on-board the hijacked MV Albedo.
On a personal level the families & well wishers of the hijacked crew of MV Albedo have opened a bank account with the hope of raising funds to pay the ransom and free their well wishers, if you or anyone is unable to financially contribute its requested you to join in creating public pressure to help lobby the the various governments to seek the release of their citizens.