Russia assures safe departure of Bangladeshi sailors from Ukraine
Published: 21:48 3 March 2022
Russia today said it regretted the death of a sailor onboard a Bangladeshi ship in Ukraine amid the armed conflict there and assured Dhaka of making “every effort” to ensure the ship’s safe departure of the vessel.
“We express deep condolences to the near and dear ones of the deceased,” the Russian embassy said in a statement.
Without elaboration, the statement said the “circumstances of the incident are being established” as Bangladeshi sailor Hadisur Rahman, the third engineer of ‘MV Banglar Samriddhi’, was killed as the vessel was anchored at Ukraine’s Olvia Port.
But it claimed that Russia’s armed forces command “relying on the objective monitoring data, has repeatedly stated that, during the retreat, the Ukrainian nationalists open indiscriminate fire and deliberately capture hostages, use them as a ‘human shield’, resorting to the well-known terrorists' tactic”.
The statement said the Russian defence ministry launched the hotline +7 495 498-34-46, +7 495 498-42-11, +7 495 498-41-09 for resolving the humanitarian issues arising from the special military operation in Ukraine, including the requests for evacuation of the civilians.
The information could be also forwarded to the e-mail [email protected], it said.
Bangladesh Shipping Corporation (BSC) officials in Chattogram, meanwhile, said their ship ‘MV Banglar Samriddhi’ was stranded in a Ukrainian port.
“We are working relentlessly to rescue the sailors,” BSC executive director Dr Pijush Dutta told newsmen in the port city adding that they were also scrutinizing the international maritime laws to negotiate about their safe departure.
The official said the ship was scheduled to move out of the port before the attack, but could not leave it due to delay in getting port authorities clearance and got stranded amid halted port operations.
He said BSC was satisfied with the performance of the ill-fated Bangladeshi flagged carrier vessel’s captain and crew as they tried their best to reduce the damage risking their lives.
Dutta said Hadisur Rahman was killed in a missile attack, which immediately sparked a fire on the ship at the Ukrainian port at 9:25 pm last night but the remaining 28 crew members of the ship were safe and managed to douse the blaze immediately.
He said that another BSC ship was on its way to Ukraine with commercial cargo, but its master was asked to redirect its course and stay in international waters as the armed conflict escalated there.
Banglar Samriddhi, a bulk carrier owned by BSC, left for Olvia port on February 22 as the Russian attack in Ukraine began.
Hadisur Rahman was working as the third engineer of the ship since 2018 after graduating from Bangladesh Marine Academy.
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