Seven of the nine Greek nationals trapped on the Greek-flagged freighter Angelic Power will be arriving in the country on Thursday afternoon on an Air France flight, the Shipping and Foreign ministries announced.
The men have remained on the ship for more than a year after it was blocked from setting sail from an anchorage off the coast of China by a naval court order, due to a dispute between the two shipping companies that manage the bulk carrier. There are a total of 22 people on board the vessel.
Six seamen and the technical inspector will be able to return, but two of the sailors — the captain and chief mate — and the 13 Filipinos making up the remainder of the crew will remain on board.
The Shipping Ministry, with the assistance of the Aggelikousis Group and the Onassis Foundation, arranged to meet their immediate needs for fuel, food and drinking water.
The company managing the vessel has been fined 500,000 euros by the Greek authorities and a case against it has been filed with the Piraeus Misdemeanours Court public prosecution.
Efforts are continuing for the return of the remaining sailors.
The return of the Greek nationals was arranged with Chinese authorities following many months of coordinated actions and initiatives by both ministries.