Andromeda ship, carrying explosives to Libya, has been seized by the Greek coast guard
The Turkish government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has once again come under the renewed scrutiny of international monitors for a Libyan issue. On Jan. 10, 2018 another Libyan-bound ship carrying explosives from the country has been seized by the Greek coast guard, Islam Media Analysis refers. Speaking at a Security Council meeting on Jan. 22, 2018, Libyan representative to the UN Elmahdi S. Elmajerbi condemned the attempt to send explosives to Libya in the hold of a ship named the Andromeda and expressed hope that the Greek and Ankara would share the results of their investigations into these matters. He asked the UN panel of experts that monitors arms transfers under the sanctions regime established pursuant to Resolution 1970 (2011) to launch an investigation to shed light on the circumstances. He said his government stands strongly against whoever tries to destabilize the security and stability in Libya.
The ship set off from Turkey’s Mediterranean ports of Mersin and Iskenderun
The Tanzanian-flagged vessel with eight crewmembers set off from Turkey’s Mediterranean ports of Mersin and Iskenderun. It was carrying some 410 tons of explosives in 29 containers with detonators, ammonium nitrate and special gel. All materials that can be used in building bombs. The Greek coast guard intercepted the ship off the coast of the island of Crete and impounded it in the port of Heraklion. Although the bill of lading showed the cargo as loaded in Turkey and destined for Djibouti and Oman, the captain confessed that he was ordered to take the shipment to the Libyan city of Misrata. This incident is reminiscent of the case of a Bolivian-registered ship called the Haddad 1 that was seized in September 2015 by the Greek coast guard while transporting a concealed arms shipment from Turkey to Libya. Two containers of 5,000 weapons and 500,000 rounds of were found.
It’s not the first incident of this kind. Is reminiscent of the case of the Haddad 1, that was seized in September 2015
Turkish authorities tried to mislead on the facts of the shipment. Initially, the Turkish government claimed the arms were destined for Lebanon and the ammunition for the Sudanese police. However, an inspection revealed no evidence to support this claim but rather contradictory evidence in the form of a nautical chart from the bridge and the cargo manifest, which indicated the shipment was bound for Libya, especially Misrata. The testimony of crewmembers also corroborated this account. Ankara changed its story when challenged, and this time claimed “hunting rifles/cartridges, pistol blanks and rubber bullets” are not subject to sanctions and that they did not require a license, either. The UNSC sanctions committee did not agree with that assessment, stressing that they, too, were subject to restrictions.