The Maldives coastguard has this evening located a Sri Lankan vessel that picked up eight survivors lost at sea in Maldivian waters after their boat had capsized. Authorities have also confirmed that two other passengers travelling on the capsized ship have died.
Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) Spokesperson Major Abdul Raheem confirmed to Minivan News this evening that eight survivors who had been on the capsized boat, known as ‘Hihvaru’, were found safely aboard a Sri Lankan fishing vessel located 370 miles off Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll.
According to a statement on the MNDF’s website, one of the passengers confirmed to have died is a Maldivian national identified as Hassan Futha, a 76 year-old male from Rathafandhoo in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll.
The MNDF has not identified the name of the other passenger, confirming only that the deceased was an expatriate and that eight other missing people from the ‘Hihvaru’ have been found and rescued by the Sri Lankan fishing boat.
According to the MNDF website, the ‘Hihvaru’ set sail from Male’ on November 28 at 7:00pm and was heading towards Huvadhu Atoll with 10 passengers aboard, including an 11 year-old boy. The boat was also loaded with goods to be taken to Huvadhu Atoll.
The MNDF said that two of the 10 passengers aboard were Bangladeshi nationals. The coastguard had begun searching for the vessel on November 29 after it was first declared missing and was assisted by the Indian government.
Authorities confirmed in a statement yesterday that the Sri Lankan fishing boat had discovered the eight men hanging from the capsized boat 290 miles off the island of Dhaandhoo in Gaa Alifu Atoll.