Thursday, September 3, 2009

Somali Pirates and Filipino Sailors

The subject of Somali Pirates concerns me mainly because I have a brother who is a sailor. The ship where he works used to sail in the Gulf of Alden going to Suez Canal. According to the International Maritime Bureau, Piracy has increased in the Gulf of Aden — a crucial shipping route in and out of the Suez Canal — and elsewhere off the coast of Somalia. Attacks have more than doubled in the first half of 2009 compared to the same period a year ago.

I know that there are 42 Filipino seafarers that remained in the hands of Somali pirates. I can't imagine their family's ordeal. Having a brother who is at risk, I can't help but worry about his safety.

Despite the risk of being captured by Somali Pirates, Philippines still supplies about 30 percent of the world's 1.2 million merchant sailors. I admit, that many of these sailors took the risk because the salary of sailor is somewhat lucrative. In a country where jobs are limited, a seafarer job is considered a blessing.

Let us all pray for the safety of all the seafarers who are working hard in order to provide the needs of their families.


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