One Of 17 Indian Crew Members Of MSC Aries Seized By Iran Return Home Safely

Container Ship
Representation Image

Ann Tessa Joseph, a Thrissur resident, was greeted warmly by the government authorities at Cochin International Airport in Kerela after returning from Iran on April 18, 2024.

Ann Tessa Joseph was one of the 17 Indian crew members onboard the Portugal-flagged MSC Aries that was seized by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps on April 13, 2024, in the Strait of Hormuz.

The Indian Ministry of External Affairs confirmed her safe return and stated that appropriate measures are underway to safeguard the welfare of the remaining 16 Indian nationals.

According to the Ministry of External Affairs, the Indian mission in Tehran is actively involved in the situation and has maintained communication with the crew members who are still in Iranian custody.

The crew members are in good condition and connected with their family and relatives in India.

According to the Iranian authorities, the crew members are not detained but are held at the discretion of the ship’s captain.

Iraj Elahi, the Iranian Ambassador to India, stated that the Indian crew members are in good health and can leave Iran whenever they want.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps seized the vessel MSC Aries, citing an alleged violation of international maritime law.

Indian Crew
Image Credits: MEA India/Twitter

Israel’s Foreign Minister condemned the seizure as a pirate operation and demanded immediate sanctions against Iran.

Due to logistical difficulties, the return of the remaining 16 Indian crew members is still complicated.

The seized vessel cannot be left unmanned; thus, some crew members must stay aboard.

However, following India’s intervention in the matter, arrangements have been made for crew members to communicate with their families.

The Indian Ministry of External Affairs has been actively involved in negotiations with Iranian authorities to guarantee the safe release of the Indian crew members.

The MSC Aries, affiliated with Zodiac Maritime, is chartered, managed and operated by the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).

The vessel’s crew comprises Estonians, Filipinos, Indians, Pakistanis, and Russians.

MSC shipping has pledged to cooperate with relevant authorities to ensure the crew’s safety.

India’s measures reflect its commitment to protecting its citizens amid escalating regional tensions.

Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has personally expressed his concerns to Iranian counterparts, highlighting India’s diplomatic effort to ensure the safe return of its citizens.

Reference: The Hindu, Hindustan Times

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