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Piracy in the Georgian manner2009-08-19 14:25
Another incident happened recently in the Georgian-Abkhazian water zone. The Georgian coast guard service has detained a Turkish vessel, BUKET, which was to deliver petroleum, oil and lubricants to Sukhum. In Tbilisi, this cargo was estimated as smuggled goods, so long as the ship entered "the territorial waters of Georgia" without getting a preliminary agreement of the Georgian party and did not comply with the required customs procedures. However, the Abkhazian party has got its own opinion of their neighbors' actions.
A freight of two tons of petroleum and 700 tons of diesel oil never reached the Abkhazian capital: the whole of the BUKET crew consisting of 17 citizens of Turkey and four citizens of Azerbaijan has been detained by the border police of Georgia, while the capital has been put to an isolation ward in Poti, as Rosbalt reports. The transport administration of Georgia has already made a warning: any water craft that tries to illegally cross the Georgian border "will share the same fate". A criminal case has been opened in respect of the "large volumes of smuggled goods", and the future of the ship will be decided upon by the court of Georgia.
Meanwhile, Director of the Abkhazian Ocean State Company Zaur Ardzinba estimated the detention of trade ships in neutral waters as an act of piracy, which is also contradicting the international naval and humanitarian law. "The Georgian border guards have again shown their "Somali" character, having deprived Abkhazia of another lot of fuel right in the middle of the holiday season", - Apsnypress is quoting him. In the opinion of Ardzinba, the incident proves once more that Georgia is throwing sand in the wheels of the economic development of the young state.
The foreign policy administration of Abkhazia has already responded to the arrest of the transport vessel. According to an official statement, the incident reveals "the same Georgian policy aimed at destabilizing the situation in the region, using all means of political and economic pressure upon Abkhazia". In addition, the statement says that such actions are realized by Georgia in the context of the presence of numerous international observers. "The absence of the international community's adequate evaluation is regarded by the Abkhazian party as purposeful encouragement of Georgia's aggressive policy, which may lead to further escalation of the tension", - the Abkhazian MFA underlines. - Taking into consideration mentioned above, the Abkhazian party reserves the right to undertake relevant measures on protecting the freights delivered to Abkhazia and lays the blame for any possible consequences upon the Georgian party".
This is not the first incident that happened lately in Abkhazia.