DFA: Filipino crew members on Turkish ship safe after Russian bombing

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 26 2022 05:20 PM

Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier Yasa Jupiter, a Turkish-owned ship which was hit by a bomb off the coast of Ukraine's port city Odessa on Thursday, sails in the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey February 25, 2022. Murad Sezer, Reuters
Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier Yasa Jupiter, a Turkish-owned ship which was hit by a bomb off the coast of Ukraine's port city Odessa on Thursday, sails in the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey February 25, 2022. Murad Sezer, Reuters

MANILA - Filipino crew members aboard a Turkish ship are safe after the vessel was hit by a Russian bomb in the port city of Odessa, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said on Saturday. 

This vessel is different from another cargo ship owned by a Japanese firm, wherein a Filipino crew member was injured after a missile struck the ship off the Ukrainian coast. 

The DFA said the country's embassy in Ankara and consulate general in Instanbul are "jointly coordinating" with the ship's Turkish owner, Yasa Holding, regarding the developments.

"According to the Personnel Relations Officer of Yasa, all crew members onboard, including 11 Filipinos, were not hurt and are safe. The Filipino crewmembers have already contacted their families in the Philippines," the statement read. 

"The Philippine Embassy and Consulate General continue to coordinate with Yasa on any assistance that can be extended to the Filipino crew members."

The ship was supposedly traveling to Turkey and was set to arrive south of Istanbul on Friday. 

A total of three non-military vessels have now been hit since the start of the Russia's invasion of Ukraine. On Thursday, the Turkish-owned Yasa Jupiter cargo ship was struck off Odessa. 

Ukraine's infrastructure ministry said that the Moldovan-flagged vessel, the Millennial Spirit, was carrying 600 tonnes of diesel at the time of the attack from a Russian military ship.

Earlier on Friday, Moldova's naval agency said the crew of the Millennial Spirit was Russian and that two of them had been seriously injured.

According to the Ukrainian ministry, the cargo ship Namura Queen was also hit by Russian missiles on Friday.

"According to the information of the traffic control and the service of the Harbor Master at 12:55 at anchorage point No.358 a rocket hit the stern of the mv 'NAMURA QUEEN'," Ukrainian shipping agent Stark Shipping based in Odessa said.

"The ship flying the flag of Panama was heading to the Pivdennyi port (ex. Yuzhny) to load grain ... There was a fire on the ship, the P&O STAR tug moved to the rescue. The situation is under control," it added.

The PO Star tug was seen alongside the Namura Queen earlier on Friday, according to Refinitiv Eikon ship tracking.

Late on Friday, the Panama Maritime Authority urged ships to keep "maximum vigilance and increase security conditions on board" when moving through Ukrainian and Russian waters, in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. - with reports from Reuters and Kyodo News

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