July 16, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Two cargo ships collided off the island of Chios

Two cargo ships collided 9 nautical miles north-northwest of the island of Chios in the eastern Aegean on Friday afternoon. Despite the fact that the Turkish ship was taking on water, its captain refused the help of the Greek Coast Guard.

A total of 32 crew members are on board the Vanuatu -ANT- and Singapore – POTENTIA- flagged vessels. No one was injured, ANT1 reported.

POTENTIA, according to the captain, was heading from Egypt to Ukraine (in anticipation of a grain deal? I wonder how this happened given the Russian blockade?), and ANT left the port of Izmir in Turkey for France.

Both vessels have no cargo and are reportedly in no danger of sinking, media reported, citing Coast Guard sources. The request for the evacuation of the crews has not been received, and there is no explanation of the causes of the accident yet.

However, the General Maritime Secretariat of Turkey reported that water was found in the hold of a vessel belonging to Turkey.

“Nine miles northwest of Chios, a Turkish-owned Vanuatu-flagged vessel collided with a 13 Turkish cargo vessel ANT and a Singapore-flagged vessel POTENTIA, off ANT, water is entering the hold.”

It is reported that 6 boats of the Greek Coast Guard arrived at the scene of the collision, as well as a Navy helicopter, a Navy ship and other vessels sailing nearby.

According to media reports, the accident occurred in neutral waters, where, however, the search and rescue operation is being carried out by the Greek authorities.

At the same time, 13 Turkish crew members of the Vanuatu-flagged vessel still refuse to accept the help of the Greek Coast Guard, some media reported.

According to Mega TV Live Newsa Turkish coast guard boat approached the collision site, but it remains in Turkish territorial waters.

At the same time, the Greek Coast Guard is reportedly in contact with the captains of cargo ships that were in neutral waters but were in the search and rescue zone, for which the Greek authorities are responsible.

Greek media recall the 1996 Imia incident, when Turkey tried to intervene in a search and rescue operation by the Greek authorities after a Turkish ship ran aground. The incident nearly brought the two countries to the brink of war, creating so-called “gray zones” in the Aegean with Turkey to continue to dispute Greek sovereignty over a number of islands and islets in the area.

According to the website marine traffic at the time of publication, the POTENTIA has left the collision site and is moving away from the island of Psara at a speed of 11 knots in the direction of the French port of Dieppe, and the vessel ant, at a speed of 3.5 knots, moving towards the Ukrainian port of Reni.

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