World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Norwegian coastguard boards Greenpeace ship

Norwegian coastguard boards Greenpeace ship in defiance of international maritime law

Barents Sea, May 30th 2014 -- The Norwegian coastguard tonight boarded the Greenpeace ship Esperanza outside of the country’s territorial waters to end a high profile protest against Arctic oil drilling. The environmental group considers the boarding of the ship illegal under international maritime law.

At 10:10PM CET the Norwegian Coastguard asked the Esperanza to end its occupation of the Hoop drilling site and end an 89 hour protest. After the ship refused to leave its position 30 minutes later, an unknown number of Norwegian coast guard arrived in two boats and boarded the ship at 10:50pm CET. They immediately cut all communications from the ship.

"The Norwegian Coast Guard is stopping a legal and peaceful Greenpeace action against Arctic drilling. The Esperanza was exercising its right to freedom of navigation as guaranteed in international law. While inconvenient for Statoil, our actions were lawful, in contrast to the intervention by the Coastguard.” said Greenpeace International legal counsel Daniel Simons.

Speaking from the deck of the Esperanza moments before it was boarded, Greenpeace Arctic campaigner Sune Scheller said:

“We are appalled by Norway’s decision to end a peaceful and legal protest. It keeps surprising me how far nation states will go to protect big oil companies. We have just as much right as Statoil to sail our ship in this part of the Arctic Ocean. We will not stand by while their drilling rigs destroy our last remaining wild places.

“I’m proud of what we’ve achieved. Statoil has had to put its plans to drill the northernmost well in the world on hold since we began the protest 89 hours ago. Now we are apparently being taken by the authorities and our occupation ended. Now it’s up to everyone to stand up against Statoil and all the other companies wanting to exploit the Arctic, instead of protect it.”

Earlier today Greenpeace lawyers insisted that the creation of a safety zone without due warning breaches both the international law of the sea and Norwegian maritime law. The full text of Greenpeace’s appeal is available below.

Norway’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) extends 200 miles from the country’s coastline. Under Article 58, paragraph 1, of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, foreign vessels like the Esperanza enjoy freedom of navigation through the EEZ .

Earlier this week a total of 15 Greenpeace activists occupied the Statoil contracted oil rig for 48 hours before climbers were removed by police and taken to the city of Tromsø. All were released without charge. Hours later the Greenpeace ship Esperanza sailed towards the Hoop drilling site and occupied the area in an attempt to block the rig from moving into position.


Pictures from right before boarding available on: http://photo.greenpeace.org/C.aspx?VP3=ViewBox_VPage&ALID=27MZIF3CYY_Y&CT=Album

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Mexico: Disappearances Reach Record Number This Year

The National Registry of Missing Persons acknowledges that from 2007 to date, there are 23,605 cases of disappeared persons; 40% have been reported during the current administration of President Enrique Peña Nieto. More>>

Ban To Take Up Fight Against Ebola With All UN Organisations

Street sellers at Waterside market in central Monrovia, where there has seen a huge drop in customers over the past months due to the onset of the Ebola Virus Disease. Photo: UNDP/Carly Learson (20 November 2014) More>>

ALSO:

Darfur: UN-Backed Event Promotes Role Of Women In Peace

Darfur: amid mass rape allegations, UN-backed event promotes role of women in peace processes More>>

Ebola Cases No Longer Rising In Guinea And Liberia

In Conakry, Guinea, a mobilizer teaches children about proper handwashing techniques, which help prevent the spread of diseases, including Ebola. Photo: UNICEF/Timothy La Rose More>>

ALSO:

UN: Alleged Mass Rape In North Darfur

UNAMID commanders from Rwanda and Ethiopia exhange duties in Tabit, North Darfur, to escort a convoy of World Food Programme (WFP) trucks travelling from El Fasher to Shangil Tobaya. Photo: UNAMID/Albert González Farran More>>


Illegal Fishermen Encroach On World’s Most Isolated Tribe

Due to their isolation the Sentinelese of India's Andaman Islands are the most vulnerable society on the planet. They face increasing threats from illegal fishermen who are targeting their waters. More>>

World War: Nearly 1,000 Dead Amid Shaky Ukraine Ceasefire

In latest report, UN rights office says nearly 1,000 dead amid shaky Ukraine ceasefire More>>

ALSO:

Palestinian Activists Cross Apartheid Wall

Friday morning around 50 Palestinian and international activists used makeshift bridges to cross the Apartheid wall between Qalandiya and Northern Jerusalem. This non-violent direct action was in response to the restrictions Israel had placed on Palestinian ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news