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CHARGES CHANGED

UPDATE INFORMATION:
 
The Greenpeace crew of the MS Arctic Sunrise have become known in the Media as the "Arctic 30".  This week the Russian Authorities have changed the charges of Piracy against these persons to Hooliganism.  This has been described in some maritime blogs as a reduction of charges actually it is anything but and the "Arctic 30" are in greater difficulties.

Under Russian Law Hooliganism is defined as: 

"is a gross violation of public order, expressing clear disrespect for society, committed with the use of objects used as weapons, organized group that is associated with resistance to authority".

The sentences handed down as punishment for being convicted of Hooliganism under Russian Law by the Russian Courts can be severe.  By taking this action the Russian Authorities bring all charges under Russian Law only.  Therefore they do not have to prove an Act of Piracy under International Maritime Law as stated in UNCLOS.  NAUTICAL LOG suggests this is most likely a reaction to the recent statements by the Media, Maritime Unions and Governments. 

This change of the charges now places those charged in an extremely difficult position facing long sentences entirely under Russian Law and Courts.  The recent public abuse of Russian leadership by German leadership was unwise, uncalled for and no Russian is going to ignore such insults.  One has to wonder where modern politicians both at home and abroad attended - if they ever did -  diplomacy classes. 

The leadership of the European Union by its frau f├╝hrer with her lectures to leaders of other countries only adds to the complexity of international political relationships.

Good Watch.

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