Today, the Russian side has received an official note from the Embassy of Malta in Russia that the Maltese side is not going to send their representatives to participate in the transfer of the vessel at the port Las Palmas. The only obligation that Malta takes over is informing the ship owner.
As previously reported, September 16 investigation actions on board the Arctic Sea, conducted by Russian investigators were completed and the ship owner and the authorized representatives of Malta were notified about that. The representatives of the police and the Malta Maritime Authority, headed by Mark Chappell, the captain of the Maritime Administration, were taking part in the investigative actions on board the vessel. In this regard the decision of the Maltese side looks inconsistent, illogical and contrary to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea dated 1982 on the obligations of flag states.
This decision of the Maltese side causes problems with the ship's arrival at the port of Las Palmas, the island of Grand Canaria in the Canary Archipelago, as an agreement had been reached with the authorities of the Kingdom of Spain.
Moreover, the Maltese government's decision puts in a difficult position the vessel crew and investigators on board. The Arctic Sea runs out of life support products, including fuel and drinking water.