Situation in eastern Mediterranean
In the humanitarian
crisis surrounding the current escalation of hostilities in the eastern Mediterranean,
the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has expressed concern for the
safe evacuation by sea of persons affected by the conflict and for the safety
of commercial shipping operating in the area.
to the evacuation operation, the provisions of Article V of the International
Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which states that "For
the purposes of evacuating persons in order to avoid a threat to the security
of their lives a Contracting Government may permit the carriage of a larger
number of persons in its ships than is otherwise permissible under the present
are of particular importance.
IMO is also
concerned that all necessary appropriate measures are taken to protect the safety
of life and property at sea and the protection and preservation of the marine
environment in the affected area. To that end, Spain, in her capacity as the
NAVAREA Co-ordinator responsible for issuing maritime safety information in
the Mediterranean Sea, has been issuing, since 13 July 2006, appropriate Navigational
Warnings informing and advising shipping about developments in the eastern Mediterranean.
IMO has also
been informed that, as provided for by the International Ship and Port Facility
Security (ISPS) Code, maritime administrations of Member States have advised
ships flying their flag to raise their security level while sailing through
the eastern Mediterranean Sea area.
Transport Ministers and maritime representatives of IMO Member Governments concerned,
the Ambassador of Lebanon in London, the Commandants of the Hellenic and Italian
Coast Guards, the President of the International Hydrographic Bureau, the NAVAREA
Co-ordinator for the Mediterranean Sea and other authorities competent for the
evacuation operation and the issuance of appropriate navigational warnings are
being consulted and the IMO Secretariat is closely following developments.
25, 18 July 2006
information please contact:
Lee Adamson, Head, Public Information Services on 020 7587 3153 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Natasha Brown, External Relations Officer on 020 7587 3274 (email@example.com).