13:15 13.10.2017

Turkish authorities impose tough control of how ships observe restrictions for entering Crimean ports – PGO head's spokesperson

Turkish authorities impose tough control of how ships observe restrictions for entering Crimean ports – PGO head's spokesperson

 Top managers of the Turkish Chamber of Shipping has sent a letter to all participants of maritime transportation and port business, saying that measures should be taken as part of the toughening of control over the observation of Crimea ports cooperation restrictions by ships.

"Turkish ports, marine agents, operators and ship owners are officially informed that ships arriving from Crimea and its ports are not allowed to enter our country [Turkey], and no permits are provided for sailing from these ports. In addition, the tough control system is introduced," spokeswoman for Ukraine's prosecutor general Larysa Sarhan wrote on her Facebook page on Thursday.

"Control is provided via requesting documents on leaving the last port from ships, as well as entries from the ships' logbooks to accompany a ship if ports' authorities inform about the arrival of ships from Black Sea ports and supervising the process using all available systems and open resources (AIS and other resources) to check the fact that the ships arrive from the above-mentioned ports," Sarhan said, citing the letter.

She said that top managers of Turkish ports is to receive a written liability in the following form: "We hereby declare and confirm that the last point of departure of this vessel that turns to our port is not the Crimean port, it does not go from this port to the Crimean ports. No actions are taken with respect to the duty, port and trade documents having the mark "Crimea"... In case of establishing the opposite fact concerning anything specified above, all port charges and legal responsibility lays down on our body".

Sarhan said that the introduction of these rules is the consequence of spread practice when ships violating legislation recently provide Turkish marine and port authorities with false information about their destination ports.

She also said that the document sent to the Turkish maritime and port authorities separately emphasizes that "these actions apply fully and without exception, despite the owner, the flags of the ships and the fact whether they are loaded or not."

"If this requirement is met, the Turkish port authorities can influence all vessels passing through the Bosporus without exception," Sarhan wrote.

She said that the document was sent after a visit of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko to Ankara late September, when he held a number of official meetings, in particular in the Turkish Ministry of Justice. He also met with the chief prosecutor of Ankara. Then the parties discussed legal cooperation and cooperation to prevent and suppress Russia's permanent violations of international maritime law, as well as illegal maritime links with the occupied Crimea.

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