By Marita Moaje

MV Tutor (Photo grabbed from VesselFinder.com)

MANILA – The Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) announced on Tuesday that the shipping principal of the Liberian-flagged bulk carrier MV Tutor would soon launch a search operation for a missing Filipino crew member.

In an advisory, the DMW said the Philippine Embassy in Athens, Greece already had a meeting with the MV Tutor’s shipping principal.

“Search operations for our missing seafarer shall be undertaken as soon as the ship is taken to a safe port,” the DMW said.

“Meanwhile, we remain hopeful and are in touch with the family of the seafarer.”

The department’s statement came in response to a report from the White House saying a Filipino sailor was killed when the Houthi rebels attacked the MV Tutor on June 12.

Migrant Workers Secretary Hans Leo Cacdac earlier said the MV Tutor has an all-Filipino crew of 22 seafarers.

Of this number, 21 seafarers arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 on Monday.

The group was able to return home after they were rescued by a US Navy Ship.

In a press briefing on Monday, Cacdac clarified that it is early to claim that the missing seafarer is already dead.

“We have to be precise about this. He is missing, he has not been found, and he has to be searched before we can make conclusions kung ano ang nangyari sa kanya (on what happened to him). He has to be found, searched and found,” he said. (PNA)