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Russian Fishery Agency intends to sue Senegal govt for armed detention of ship

January 08, 2014, 14:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Russian representatives have hired a professional local lawyer

1 pages in this article
© Screenshot Russia 24

MOSCOW, January 08, 14:44 /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Federal Fishery Agency (Rosrybolovstvo) is preparing suits against the Senegalese government in connection with the armed detention of the Oleg Naidenov trawler, a Rosrybolovstvo official told Itar-Tass.

Russian representatives have hired a professional local lawyer. Suits will be filed in the next few days, the official said.

Rosrybolovstvo intends to bring several suits to court in Senegal, including for the refusal to provide medical care for the captain. Suits will be also brought over the fact of detention of the ship and the fact of use of arms and brute force.

The agency official believes Senegal's authorities delay legal investigation. Captain Vadim Mantorov on Tuesday was not allowed to leave the ship for medical examination of his injuries he received when the ship was seized. He was to undergo medical examination in a clinic chosen by the Russian side.

Rosrybolovstvo believes the main role to delay the negotiating process is played by Senegal's "Green lobby". However, Russian diplomats and fishery agency officials will continue making efforts to settle the situation. The Russian side intends to come with a peaceful dialogue to all the levels of Senegalese authorities, the agency's public relations centre noted.

The Russian Federal Fishery Agency said earlier it believed the talks planned for January 7 with Senegal's President Macky Sall over the detention of the trawler were cancelled under Greenpeace pressure. Rosrybolovstvo refers to the Greenpeace organization's press release, in which it confirms its support for the Senegalese government in the enforcement of the fishing regulations and appeals to the Senegalese president and the government to remain resolute and put an end to illegal actions of such vessels.

This means the army of the sovereign Republic of Senegal acts under the Greenpeace command, said the head of the Rosrybolovstvo public relations centre, Alexander Savelyev.

Senegal's army continues holding the fishing trawler Oleg Naidenov with citizens of Russia and Guinea Bissau aboard at a military base in Dakar, the official noted.

Negotiations between a Russian delegation and Senegalese authorities planned at first for Tuesday morning and later for Tuesday evening, January 7, over the ship detention were postponed, and the meeting was expected to be held on Wednesday.

"We hope for a meeting with Senegal's President Macky Sall to tell him about our concerns," said Alexander Biryukov, a Rosrybolovstvo official. "We are working and will be working on all the levels to settle the situation -- with officials of the Fishery Ministry and other departments," he said. "We will demand the matter be cleared up, and the main thing is that we will demand to free the vessel."

The official said Senegalese authorities had not presented any documents with formulated accusations against the trawler to the Russian side so far.

The Senegalese military detained the Russian trawler Oleg Naidenov in a tough operation with the use of force. The incident took place 46 miles off Guinea Bissau's coast in early January. Some sailors aboard the trawler were injured. The ship was escorted to the port of Dakar.

Sixty two Russian citizens, mostly sailors from the Murmansk Region, and 20 citizens of Guinea Bissau are aboard the Oleg Naidenov. The crew remain aboard under guard of Senegalese law enforcers. The sailors' documents were seized immediately after they were detained.

The Oleg Naidenov belongs to a company registered in Murmansk. It is a large fishing vessel, 120 m long. The ship was built in Germany in 1989.

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