The deadline for collection of ransom needed to release seven Pakistanis held hostage by Somali pirates onboard the MV Albedo lapses tomorrow, April 20.
Families and officials fear it is unlikely that the deadline would be met.
The pirates, who captured the Malaysian-flagged MV Albedo some 17 months ago, have demanded Rs320 million for the release of the crew and the vessel by April 20.
Half of the money, Rs160 million, is to be collected by the Pakistanis while the other half is to be raised by the Malaysian owner. Citizen Police Liaison Committee (CPLC) chief Ahmed Chinoy did not share the exact amount of money collected so far, but said: “We have to collect Rs 160 million, and there is still a long way to go.”
Chinoy said he will make a decision today about seeking an extension from the pirates as he is waiting for a reply from various quarters for donations.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 19th, 2012.