LIMBURG Probe to be Carried Out Jointly

Friday, October 11, 2002
The Yemen Government released a Statement of 10 October saying that the Yemeni and French investigations into the incident on the French oil tanker LIMBURG are to go jointly. The final report should be prepared jointly. The IMO will send an expert to help assess the environmental effects of the oil spill. The French Government has yet to update its Statement of October 9 saying that it has no conclusion or indication as to whether the explosion was accidental or not. At the Briefing of October 10 conducted by the U.S. Department of State, the spokesman said that "terrorism has not been ruled out as a possible cause." In a related development, the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) issued an Advisory warning of non-specific threats, apparently by al Qaeda leaders, against U.S. economic interests. Mariners are advised to be on a heightened state of alert and U.S. vessels required to file AMVER reports and operating in the North Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, Persian Gulf, Gulf of Aden, Red Sea, and the Suez Canal are reminded to file position reports every 24 hours vice every 48 hours. Meanwhile, the press is reporting that the Aden-Abyan Islamic Army, a militant fundamentalist group in Yemen, is claiming responsibility for the incident. The press is also reporting that debris of a boat suspected to be the terrorist vessel has been found during the inspection of the LIMBURG. This incident will provide further impetus to maritime security efforts ongoing at the IMO and the U.S. Source: HK Law

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