USCG Detains Ship with Iraqi Crew
The U.S. Coast Guard detained the 880-ft. oil tanker, Aldawha, in Delaware Bay because two crewmembers are Iraqi nationals. The Coast Guard Captain of the Port in Philadelphia ordered the Qatar-flagged M/V Aldawha to remain at anchor last Wednesday evening upon determining through Advance Notice of Arrival screening that two crewmembers aboard the U.S. bound ship are Iraqi nationals. A Coast Guard boarding team boarded the ship and completed an inspection of the ship. As of Friday, the ship remains under positive control of an armed Coast Guard boarding team and officials from the Department of Homeland Security Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement as an investigation into the status of the crew is ongoing.
Under Operation Liberty Shield, the Coast Guard is screening and tracking all foreign flagged ship arrivals and increasing port security boardings of ships before they arrive in U.S. ports. The Coast Guard has also increased both waterborne and airborne patrols of U.S. ports and waterways since the DHS threat level was elevated to Orange last week.