Andaman Sea, 26 Jumadil Awwal 1438/23 February (MINA) – After almost a month at sea, the 184 food flotilla mission volunteers on Nautical Aliya will finally be arriving home.
The participants from more than 30 local and international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) including the organising bodies from Kelab Putera 1Malaysia (KP1M) and Malaysian Consultative Council for Islamic Organisation (Mapim) is expected to port at the Boustead Cruise Terminal in Port Klang on Thursday morning.
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein is expected to be at the cruise terminal for a welcome home ceremony and to greet the flotilla heroes.
The flotilla left the same cruise terminal on Feb 3 and sailed thousands of miles across the open sea to Myanmar and Bangladesh, bringing 2,300 tonnes of humanitarian aid supplies for the Rohingya refugees.
On Feb 9, the ship arrived at the Myanmar International Terminal Thilawa in Yangon to offload 500 tonnes of the aid for the displaced Rohingyas in the Rakhine state, Myanmar.
Soon after, the mission left for the Chittagong Port in Bangladesh and on Feb 13, the vessel arrived with the remaining boxes of humanitarian aid comprising of rice, flour, cooking oil, hygiene kit and medical supplies.
The biggest disappointment for the volunteers was when most were not allowed to disembark.
The Bangladesh government gave the greenlight for only 25 participants to go ashore, citing security and safety as the main reason.
The 25 volunteers had to be escorted by the Bangladeshi armed forces and government officials to the three refugee camps, located in Cox’s Bazar and Teknaf. (T/RS05/RS01)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)