Ukrainian sailors from ship arrested in Syria returning home
Ten Ukrainian sailors who were on board the Starshina Derov N.G., a ship arrested in a Syrian port, are returning home, the Ukrayinska Pravda media outlet has reported, with reference to a representative of the Consular Service Department of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, Vasyl Kyrylych.
"Today, on the eve of [Orthodox] Christmas, Ukrainian sailors are returning to their families," Kyrylych said.
According to him, thanks to the actions of the consul, the Syrian authorities returned passport documents to the sailors, found a replacement to the crew among local residents and returned Ukrainian citizens to Lebanon.
"On January 5, Ukraine's consul met them on the Lebanese border," Kyrylych said.
He added that all financial issues, in particular, the payment of transportation costs and flight tickets to Ukraine, had been resolved by the Ukrainian Embassy in Lebanon.
According to the report, ten Ukrainian sailors have been stuck on the Starshina Derov N.G. in Syria since August 2017. The crew did not receive wages for almost two years. The ship itself is in poor technical condition and was arrested for the debts of its owner/operator under a lawsuit lodged by a third party. In addition, the ship's owner faces sanctions for repeated visits to occupied Crimea.