Indonesia keeping two South Korea ship crews in custody

Jan. 15 (UPI) — Indonesia has detained two South Korean ships for crossing into territorial waters, according to multiple South Korean press reports.

A Panama-flagged liquefied petroleum gas carrier was traveling to Singapore last year when it was seized Oct. 9, Yonhap reported Wednesday.

The second ship, cargo vessel CH Bella, was apprehended last week near Indonesia’s Bintan Island, the same area as the DL Lily, the LPG carrier, according to News 1.

The DL Lily crew has been confined to their ship for three months after Indonesian authorities confiscated their passports, according to Yonhap. The crew includes a South Korean captain, eight South Korean and eight Indonesian sailors.

A South Korean crew member who spoke to Yonhap said Indonesia authorities have not been supplying food regularly. Injured people on board are “unable to move” but authorities have not provided medical care, the source said.

On Wednesday a South Korean foreign ministry official who spoke to Yonhap denied food issues on DL Lily.

The South Korean government official said Seoul has been aware of the crew’s detainment since Dec. 5, and that the government has confirmed food was being supplied.

The official said South Korean diplomats have not made direct contact with the crew, however.

South Korea’s foreign ministry also confirmed the Indonesian navy detained the CH Bella, according to News 1.

The ministry said the cargo ship included four South Korean and 19 Indonesian crew members.

“We will actively provide consular assistance for an early release,” the ministry said.