Russia releases ‘Arctic Sunrise’
Greenpeace has announced that its Arctic Sunrise vessel has been released from the port of Murmansk by the Russian Authorities.
The vessel was detained in September last year after Greenpeace activists boarded the Prirazlomnaya platform, run by Gazprom, to protest against oil exploration and production in the Arctic.
Twenty eight Greenpeace activists and two journalists were arrested at the time, spending two months in jail before being released.
However, the Arctic Sunrise vessel “has been left unattended and unloved to rust quietly in a corner of the port far away from prying eyes,” Greenpeace’s Ben Ayliffe writes in a blog.
In March, Greenpeace said it was suing Russia for unlawful detention of its activists.
As for the vessel, Ayliffe, says that the first priority is to make sure the Sunrise is seaworthy.
“Nine months is a long time for an icebreaker to go without basic maintenance, let alone the sort of care and attention she usually gets from her crew. But like our campaign to protect the Arctic I guarantee she will emerge better, fitter and even stronger than before.”
“The Arctic Sunrise should never have been detained in the first place. There was absolutely no justification for her being boarded, seized and kept for so long in Murmansk, not least when the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea ordered her immediate release in November 2013,” Ayliffe, head of the Arctic oil campaign by Greenpeace writes.