Marcos vows to ensure safe release of 17 Filipino hostages
President Marcos on Thursday vowed to exhaust all remedies to ensure the safe return of 17 Filipino seafarers held hostage by Yemeni rebels in the Red Sea.
In a brief video message for the Filipino community in the United Arab Emirates, the President extended his apologies for canceling his trip to Dubai and his attendance at the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
“You know that there are things that need my attention, one of which is the plight of our countrymen, our fellow Filipinos who were taken hostage. Seventeen of them were taken hostage and we are doing all we can to bring them home,” Mr. Marcos said.
A few hours before his flight to Dubai on Thursday, the President said he would no longer attend the COP28 in Dubai to personally attend to important developments in the hostage crisis in the Red Sea.
In a post on X (formerly Twitter), he said a high-level delegation would be dispatched to Tehran, Iran, “with the aim of providing necessary assistance to our seafarers.”
Yemeni rebels seized the cargo vessel Galaxy Leader and took hostage its 25 crew members, including 17 Filipinos, in retaliation for Israel’s offensive in Gaza.
The Department of Foreign Affairs said the 17 Filipino seafarers were in good condition and that efforts were ongoing to secure their release.
“We are doing all we can for our countrymen so that their situation will improve and they will be able to go home soon,” the President said.