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VLADIVOSTOK, May 6. /TASS/. Russia’s Konstantin Bondarenko vessel with 12 crew members on board has been detained in China over the operator’s debts, the president of the Far Eastern Association of Sea Captains said on Wednesday.
The sailors have not been paid wages for around five months and they will soon lack food and fuel, Pyotr Osichansky told TASS, citing the relatives of the seized vessel’s crew who have sought the assistance of the Far Eastern transport prosecutors.
"The vessel has been detained by the Chinese authorities as its operator has failed to pay for the repair works. There are 12 people onboard the Konstantin Bondarenko, all of them Russians, and the crew members are "senior," older than 50, and many of them need medicines," he said.
There is around 1 tonne of fuel left onboard the vessel and the water and food supplies will be enough for just one or two days, Osichansky said. "Now an issue of the people’s repatriation to Russia will be decided, but this is usually not a quick case," he added.
The Konstantin Bondarenko tugboat was built in Japan in late July 1986 and its home port is Nakhodka, to the east of Vladivostok. The owner of the vessel is now in Khabarovsk, in the Russian Far East.