Stranded seafarers return home after 17 months in Ajman
The seafarers were stranded after a dispute between their ship's operator and the owner.
The eleven crew of the Panamanian flagged 'Agean Princess' have been able to return home to India and Myanmar, according to the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) .
The seafarers were stranded after a dispute between their ship's operator and the owner. They were held in Ajman for 17 months.
Mohamed Arrachedi, ITF inspector, has been helping the crew since they were abandoned in June 2016. "This has been a difficult case, and in the end we were helped to conclude it by the UAE Federal Transport Authority (FTA).
"The ITF and the FTA have been working closely to end abandonment in the UAE waters, and these seafarers have seen the benefit of this. As the UAE moves towards fully complying with the Maritime Labour Convention all seafarers will enjoy the greater protection they deserve.
"In this case, we also had the cooperation of the flag state of the vessel - Panama - that helped to resolve the issue."
However, the crew are still owed hundreds of thousands of dollars of unpaid wages. "But this is not the end of this sad story; the seafarers are owed wages going back to 2015, totalling over $916,000. There is never an excuse for seafarers to be abandoned like this, it is a scourge that has to stop, and it has to stop now."
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