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Ferry operator denies illegal ship-breaking claims

A-Ships Management told Recycling International on 21 September that it had no connection with a Comoros-flagged vessel called Princess. According to the NGO Shipbreaking Platform, the European passenger ship was sent to be scrapped in a non-OECD ship-breaking yard in contravention of EU regulations.

The roll-on/roll-off ferry Princess left Katakolon in Greece in July and arrived on 22 August at Chattogram in Bangladesh, where the NGO Shipbreaking Platform expects it will be beached.

‘Our company is a ship management company operating only in the context of managing vessels as per the ISM/ISPS/MLC Code,’ a company statement said. ‘A-Ships Management has never owned any vessel of any type and definitely has never executed any of the transactions mentioned in the article.’

‘Despite the fact that competent authorities were alerted in May that the ship was heading for scrap, the unit was allowed to leave European territorial waters,’ says the ship recycling action group. ‘Before its departure, the new owners changed the flag of the vessel from Cyprus to Togo, and then from Togo to Comoros, in what is a typical preparatory step prior substandard breaking.’

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