A Turkish sailor who was recently found off the northern coast of Bali by local fishermen after floating at sea for several days has been sent home this week, officials say.
Thirty-nine-year-old Erhan Seckal was adrift in the ocean for three days after he fell overboard from his ship on May 2. Local outlets reported that Seckal’s ship departed from an Australian port and was bound for Vietnam.
In the early morning of May 5, a local fisherman named Gede Budiasa, 30, who lives in Kubutambahan Village, Buleleng, saw a man waving his hands asking for help on top of a fish aggregating device (locally known as rumpon).
Severely exhausted and dehydrated, Seckal was immediately rushed by locals to the nearest local community health center for medical help.
In the meantime, local authorities ruled that Seckal had to be deported to Istanbul.
“He was sent home because he technically entered Indonesian territory without proper documents or stay permits,” Singaraja Immigration Office Head Nanang Mustofa said in a written statement.
Seckal did not have any documents with him when he was found, not even his passport, Nanang added.
Seckal boarded Turkish Airlines Flight TK-067 from Denpasar to Istanbul via Dubai on Tuesday, which departed at 9pm.
The Turkish Embassy reportedly said it appreciated local authorities for ensuring Seckal’s health before facilitating his way back home.