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Chinese ship repairers released

Chinese ship repairers released
FIFTEEN employees of Cosco Shipyard returned home on Sunday after being abducted for 12 days by three Russian-owned fishing processing vessels.

Chinese ship repairers released by Russian fishing vessels

FIFTEEN employees of Cosco Shipyard returned home on Sunday after being abducted for 12 days by three Russian-owned fishing processing vessels.

The owner of the three ships owes the yard $12.4m in repair fees, said Cosco.

Thirteen technicians and two translators from Cosco Shipyard, a 51%-owned subsidiary of Singapore-listed Cosco Corp, went on the trial voyages of the three ships on October 20 after completing repair works.

The three vessels that left Cosco"s Zhoushan Liuheng Shipyard in Ningbo were supposed to return to Zhoushan on October 21.

However, the "navigation routes were changed during the trial voyage without permission from the Chinese coastal authorities?, said Cosco Corp.

On October 29, the three vessels were found in waters to the northeast of South Korea"s Busan port by South Korea"s national maritime police and China"s Maritime Safety Administration. After two days of negotiation, the crew on board agreed to return the 15 hostages on October 31.

The China-based shipbuilder said it has only received $3.8m of the $16.2m due for the repairs so far.

It did not identify the shipowner but posted on its website the names of the three vessels. They are the 1,106 dwt, 1984-built Kapitan Kuznetsov, the 1,810 dwt, 1982-built Ivan Lyudnikov and the Semiozyornoe.

Cosco also alleged on its web site that the three vessels had violated Chinese Law. It added that it refrained from discussing the incident because of concerns about the staff members" safety.

Meanwhile, the Maritime Safety Administration is urging the ship"s agent through the Russian Ambassador in China to send the vessels back to China for investigation.

www.TurkishMaritime.Com.tr

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