Tragedy befell a group of Pakistani merchant navy crew as seven of the eight managing an Iranian ship perished when their cargo vessel, was hit by a missile in the war zone of Yemen Wednesday afternoon, a belated information reaching here revealed.
Those dead included Captain Aneesur Rehman, with 20 years experience of sea-faring, and six of his colleagues on board MV Jovoaoiya-8 which was on way to Dubai from Egyptian port of Alexandria.
Right near Yemen, when still in high seas, it was struck by a missile and sank. Only one lucky Pakistani, by the name of Kabir, jumped into sea and swam to safety. He was admitted to hospital and has spoken to wife in Karachi.
The wife of captain Anees, was in a state of shock, saying he had spoken to her at least a month ago before sailing from Egypt, and had promised to return home after completion of the journey in Dubai. Alas that was not to be.
First reports had said that five had died, but later Yemeni authorities and Ansar Burney Trust confirmed the death of seven of the total eight.
The agent confirmed that the entire crew of the ill-fated ship, including the captain, were Pakistanis. There was no claim of responsibility for the attack.
Sketchy information was available from the agent in Karachi, but well-known human rights activist Ansar Burney said on social media that the unfortunate ship was heading towards Gulf via Sea of Hodieda in Yemeni waters, when it was hit by a missile, whose responsibility none had accepted even four hours after the tragedy.
His statement said so far only one Pakistani has survive somehow who managed to swim towards some island,” according to the statement.
Yemen, since long, has been a war zone, and whether the ship had alerted local authorities before entering the endangered area was not immediately known.