Muscat: The bodies of the two brothers who went missing last Thursday evening in the Abu Abali area of Musanah province were recovered in the sea on Tuesday afternoon, the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance said in a tweet.
The boat, which the two siblings set off for fishing trip, was found in the adjoining Barka province’s shores with no trace of the brothers on Saturday.
Royal Oman Police (ROP) told Gulf News that helicopters and vessels had been dispatched to help find 16-year-old Qusai and 12-year-old Luay in the past four days.
Search teams and divers were combing shores of Musanah, Barka and Saham provinces day and night along with residents of Musanah.
Ahmad Al Yahyaei, a cousin of the two brothers, told Gulf News that the family was traumatised by their immense loss, especially the parents. Al Yahyaei added that Qusai was a certified diver as he used to go fishing with his father, Mohammad, every day.
Qusai woke up Luay while he was sleeping on Thursday afternoon, asking him to come along for the fishing trip with him, along with other siblings.
“The family had confidence in Qusai as he had gone fishing many times alone or with other children. Besides, he also used to transport some tourists using the family boat to make some extra cash”, said Al Yahyaei.
Al Yahyaei, who also works in the fishing industry, said the boat was believed to have capsized, and Qusai tried to rescue his younger brother who was not an experienced swimmer.
Four other siblings took two other boats. They returned to the village in the two boats at 6pm after the sea turned rough.
Al Yahyaei explained that the family were going through a tough time as many social media users, particularly on WhatsApp, had spread rumours in the past four days saying that the two brothers had been found alive in another province, while others said their bodies had washed ashore.
“They are heartless people, who added more pain and anguish to the distraught family”, said Al Yahyaei.
The father and the mother spent all of Sunday night searching for their children after hearing about the rumours that had spread on social media.
“The two were young and they hadn’t yet started enjoying life. Every family should think twice about allowing their children to go fishing [unassisted] as they will for sure regret it for the rest of their lives if [something like this] happens to their children,” he said.
The bodies were be laid to rest Tuesday evening.
Many young Omanis work in the fishing industry in the coastal provinces of the Batinah governorate.
Many have said that children should not have to work in such a dangerous industry.
They called on the government to come up with laws to protect children from working in such jobs.
“Many don’t have enough experience to deal with the dangers of the sea,” Ahmad Al Beloushi, an Abu Abali village resident, earlier told Gulf News.
Al Beloushi added that even experienced fishermen refuse to go fishing when the sea is rough, urging parents to exercise more control over their children.
In 2013, two children died at sea while fishing, according to Al Beloushi.
In January, two Omani fishermen, also brothers, from Al Aqar village were rescued after their boat’s engine failed.
Eight children drowned in different incident nationwide in 2015.
Around 20,000 Omanis work in the fishing sector in Oman, according to Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.