Members of Rab-8 on Thursday rescued all the thirty-five kidnapped sailors following gunfights with pirates at Narkelbaria and Sholarchar in Sharankhola upazila in the Sundarbans East Zone. All the hijacked sailors were fishermen and they were kidnapped 6 days ago.
Lt Col Faridul Islam, who is commander of Rab-8 (Barisal), launched a drive at a den of pirates at Narkelbaria around 7am.
The gunfight broke out when the pirates, sensed the presence of Rab crew members, opened fire at the elite force. At one side, the pirates retreated and succeeded to escape.
The Rab troops then saved the 14 sailors from the kidnapped fishermen between with 2 trawlers and seized 5 firearms, with 3 pistols and 2 shotguns, from the spot. However, there wasn't any arrest.
In the meantime, another gunfight took place among the bandits and Rab troops when the elite force pushed a drive at Sholarchar in the afternoon.
At one stage, the bandits released the rest nineteen hijacked sailors and fled the scene. Rab crew members recovered 2 firearms from the spot.
The joint drive by Coast Guard, Navy and Air Force was suspended at about 5 pm following the saving of all the hijacked sailors.