The UN Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) held its 20th Plenary session from 5th - 7th July 2017 in Mauritius. ISWAN attended the important meeting of stakeholders from across the globe and took part in various discussions especially on issues of welfare provisions for seafarers and their families hijacked by Somali pirates.
ISWAN’s South Asia representative, Mr Chirag Bahri, briefed the members on status of Piracy Survivor Family Fund, which is administered by ISWAN on behalf of the CGPCS. Chirag informed the meeting of the utilisation of funds for rehabilitation of seafarers returned from captivity of pirates and how it has helped them to reconstruct their lives. Chirag, while thanking donors for their generous contributions to the fund, appealed the attendees to consider to donate further funds which will be used for rehabilitation work of 26 seafarers of Naham 3 and for the eight Iranian seafarers on the FV Shiraj once they get home.
The Chair of CGPCS expressed his appreciation of the work done by ISWAN / MPHRP towards welfare of seafarers and supported Chirag’s appeal. The meeting was attended by a range of countries including UK, France, Japan, USA, India, Russia, China, Somalia, Kenya, Mauritius, Seychelles and other organisations. The members also deliberated on strengthening Somalia’s capacity to combat piracy and other maritime threats.