Georgia detained freighter with Russian crew on board

14:37, 07 April 2009
World
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For violating shipping rules

Georgia’s coastal guards have detained a freighter with Russian crew on board off Batumi for violating shipping rules.

The V. Uspensky freighter flying the Cambodian flag floated from Turkey port of Hopa to Russia’s port of Azov.

“Overnight on April 7 the freighter violated shipping rules in Georgia’ s territorial waters not far from Batumi. It was detained and tugged to the port of Batumi,” representatives of the Georgian coastal service told Itar-Tass on Tuesday.

The ship is registered in the port of Phnom Penh. Its crew consists of 14 Russian citizens.

“The crewmembers are not arrested and enjoy the right to free movement in Batumi. In compliance with Georgia’s laws the ship’s owners have to pay a fine – around 30,000 U.S. dollars,” the source said.

Georgia informed the Russian interests section at the Swiss embassy about the incident.

According to the existing information, the freighter decided to go through the closed area in territorial waters to save fuel.

Over the past five years Georgia’s coastal guards detained 80 foreign vessels, mainly those flying the flags of Turkey, Greece, Ukraine and Russia, for violating shipping and fishing rules. All of them were set free after the fine payment.

Itar-Tass

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