The Iceberg 1 crew “represent the spirit of seafarers’ determination to continue their maritime careers after this experience (of piracy)” MPHRP stated at its acceptance of the Sailor Today annual award for seafarers welfare in India.
The Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme has been recognised for excellence in caring for seafarers after piracy. The maritime community of India awarded MPHRP the Sailor Today Award 2013. The Indian crew members of the Iceberg 1 joined MPHRP staff, Roy Paul and Chirag Bahri, on stage to accept the award to applause from the 500 member audience.
Roy Paul said, “We, tonight, with the support of Sailor Today, celebrate this crew and all seafarers who have survived piracy, and their families”
The parents of Chief Officer Tiwara were also present. Tiwara did not return with the released crew. He is still missing. The audience remembered those still held by pirates, and those seafarers who died in captivity.
MPHRP also assisted in the welcome home of seafarers to India, Bangladesh , Pakistan and Sri Lanka after the Royal Grace and Syrimi were released.
Roy Paul said: “This award is dedicated to all those seafarers who have been traumatised at anytime in their life by incidents of piracy. We thank them, our industry partners, our funders, ITF Seafarers Trust, TK Foundation, Seafarers UK and IGP+I, and especially Sailor Today for this recogocnition”.
The Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Programme (MPHRP) also lauded the Indian Shipping Ministry for its role in the release of the Iceberg 1 and the Royal Grace, saying that no other government had done as much for its citizens held by pirates. The owner of one of the the vessels had abandoned the ship and its crew, adding to the trauma suffered by the seafarers and their families. Many of the crew had not been paid any salaries during the captivity period.
MPHRP, with assistance of its partners, has provided for medical assistance to the crew on their return. ICMA is a member of the industry alliance that is MPHRP. We work with our industry partners to help seafarers and maritime families affected by piracy.