15 fishermen still missing as investigations continue in piracy attacks

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As the investigation into the deadly pirate attacks off the coast of Suriname continue, traces of the 15 fishermen who are still missing are yet to be found.

Moreover, no additional arrests have been made in connection with the crimes.

Two Saturdays ago, four boats were attacked by a group of men who brutalised the occupants then threw them overboard. Two days later, another boat was attacked and the captain killed. The crew is still missing.

Those identified as missing include Ramesh Sanchara, Ganesh Persaud, Vickey Persaud, Glenroy Jones, Bharat Heralall, Ralph Anthony, and Tiaknauth Mohabir, among others.

So far, fives persons have survived the attacks, while bodies that were recovered are yet to be positively identified.

Surinamese law enforcement officials taking one of the bodies recovered to the morgue

This publication was informed that the relatives of the missing fishermen are complaining about the treatment meted out to them by the Surinamese authorities since they are not allowed to view the recovered bodies of the men.

Additionally, both Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo and Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan led teams to the Dutch speaking country where they met with the aggrieved families and Surinamese authorities to discuss the way forward with possible areas for collaboration.

According to information from Suriname online news outlet De Ware Tijd, fishermen who have survived the incident, their relatives and the relatives of those killed can look for moral, psychological and financial help from the government.

Moreover, De Ware Tijd said that “Ramjattan still needs to verify what is already promised from Georgetown, but he assures that his government is also prepared to offer all kinds of help within the possibilities.”

The Surinamese Police said they have 13 in custody but the country’s Justice and Police Minister, Stuart Faith reported that 30 persons have been arrested. The arrests, he noted, were made on water and on land.

Meanwhile, Surinamese Defence Minister Ronni Benschop assured that in a week’s time, the fishermen could safely return to work at sea after the fisherfolks refused to work in light of the deadly attacks.

The Guyanese authorities also have three persons in custody assisting with investigations on this end.

Opposition Leader Dr Bharrat Jagdeo interacting with Guyanese in Suriname over the weekend

Meanwhile, Jagdeo has since indicated that he will be raising the issue at Friday’s sitting of the National Assembly with the hopes that Speaker Dr Barton Scotland allows a discussion.

He noted that they are ready to support the Government, providing they handle the situation with the urgency and importance it requires.

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