TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Indonesian Navy (TNI AL) clarified that the incident on the KM Mina Sejati ship in the waters of Dobo Sea, Aru Islands Regency, was not hijacking.
The Navy's spokesperson First Admiral Mohammad Zaenal said that the incident was purely a crime as it was a fight between the ship crews.
"Three crew members are controlling the ship now," said Zaenal to Tempo, Monday, August 19.
Zaenal added that seven people were killed: five of them died on board and two died while jumping out to the sea, while nine other people succeeded to flee.
According to Zaenal, the Navy had not yet succeeded in establishing communication with those who controlled the boat.
"We dispatch a speedboat this morning to carry out monitoring of KM Mina Sejati," said Zaenal.
The speedboat is operated by the Visit, Board, Search, and Seizure (VBSS) team, comprised of eight people who are tasked to oversee the situation from a close range. If possible, he added, the team will also break in to the boat.
Besides, the sea wave is forecasted to reach 1 to 3 meters in height, which is highly risky for the team. So efforts must be taken by the Indonesian Navy require high vigilance. “This is risky for us and other crews,” he said.