Marine Link
Monday, February 19, 2018

United Nations News

UN Environment Visits IMO

Photo:  International Maritime Organization (IMO)

​When it comes to ocean protection and delivering on the Sustainable Development Goals,  International Maritime Organization (IMO) and UN Environment share a great deal of common ground. Erik Solheim, Executive Director of UN Environment, paid a visit to IMO today to talk with IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim about collaboration between the two Organizations, particularly how to address SDG 14 -  life below water. The issue of microplastic and how to curb its presence in the ocean was discussed as a high priority…

IMO Signs Partnership Deal with European Bank

The EBRD/IMO Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on Thursday (8 February) by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim (right) and the First Vice President of the EBRD, Phil Bennett. Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) announced that it has signed a new partnership agreement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in an effort to help promote sustainable shipping. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signed by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim and the First Vice President of the EBRD, Phil Bennett, will help promote sustainable shipping through a range of safety- and environment-focused capacity-building activities in the maritime and port sectors in selected countries.

Blue Border Security Assessment

Image:  International Maritime Organization (IMO)

International Maritime Organization (IMO) 's maritime security provisions and the IMO treaties for the suppression of unlawful acts against the safety of navigation can be seen in the wider context of the global fight against terrorism. The United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (UNCTED) carries out assessment visits to countries to assess their compliance with various international security instruments. IMO has participated in a follow-up UNCTED assessment visit to Greece (31 January to 1 February)…

Peter Thomson of Fiji is UN Special Envoy For The Ocean

Peter Thomson, Fiji’s ambassador to the United Nations, speaks to the UN News Centre in his office in New York. Photo: Masayoshi Suga/UN News Centre

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has appointed Peter Thomson of Fiji as his Special Envoy for the Ocean, aiming at galvanizing concerted efforts to follow up on the outcomes of the United Nations Ocean Conference in support of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, maintaining the momentum for action to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development. Thomson will lead the United Nations advocacy and public outreach efforts inside and outside of the United Nations system…

Japan Tells UN of North Korean Tanker in STS Transfer

Japan has told the United Nations about a North Korean tanker spotted in the East China Sea that it suspects was engaged in a transfer of goods with another tanker in defiance of U.N. sanctions, the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. North Korea's development of nuclear weapons and missiles capable of hitting the United States has spurred deepening U.N. Security Council sanctions and stoked fears of a military conflict. According to a statement issued by the Foreign Ministry, the North Korean-flagged tanker "Rye Song Gang 1" - blacklisted by the United Nations last month for carrying banned cargo - was spotted by a Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force patrol plane with the Dominican-flagged tanker "Yuk Tung" tied up beside it in the East China Sea on Saturday.

UN Atlas of the Oceans is Launched

IMO has joined with a host of other United Nations agencies and leading international scientific bodies in developing the first comprehensive real-time tool to assess the state of world's oceans. The Internet-based United Nations Atlas of the Oceans was launched on World Environment Day June 5, 2002 at a meeting of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in Paris, France. More than 2½ years in development after a decade of planning, the Atlas of the Oceans represents the most ambitious global scientific information collaboration ever on-line and an international consensus-building tool expected to assist negotiations of future marine-related agreements.

Qatar Accedes to BWM Convention

Photo:  International Maritime Organization (IMO)

​Sixty-eight countries have now signed up to International Maritime Organization (IMO)'s Ballast Water Management Convention, with Qatar being the latest to accede to the treaty helping to protect the marine environment. The signatories now represent more than 75% of the world's merchant fleet tonnage. Under the treaty, ships are required to manage their ballast water, which can contain thousands of aquatic or marine microbes, plants and organisms, which are then carried across the globe. H.E. Mr.

Somalia Anti-piracy Projects Approved by UN

The United Nations Trust Fund for the Fight against Piracy approves projects in support of anti-piracy efforts in Somalia & other affected States in the region. Other affected States in the region, include Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Maldives and the Seychelles. The announcement was made in New York by United Nations Assistant-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Tayé-Brook Zerihoun, who chaired the Board of the Trust Fund to Support Initiatives of States Countering Piracy off the Coast of Somalia. “The dramatic decline in pirate attacks is clear evidence of years of hard work by United Nations Member States, international and regional organizations, and actors in the shipping industry,” said Mr. Zerihoun.

Höegh Autoliners names Perduto as VP

Höegh Autoliners Inc. has announced the appointment of James A. Perduto as Vice President, Marketing. Perduto joins Höegh Autoliners from the United States Mission to the United Nations where he served as a Military Advisor assigned to The Joint Chiefs of Staff. His duties as a U.S. Navy Reserve Commander comprised of providing immediate strategic assessment and counsel to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and reporting to the State Department and the Joint Chiefs on the impact of United Nations’ mandates as they relate to the United States. For his service he was awarded the Joint Staff Commendation Medal.

IMO Welcomes UN Resolution on Migrant Smuggling

“There is a clear recognition among IMO Member States that using the SAR system to respond to mass mixed migration was neither foreseen nor intended, and that although Governments and the merchant shipping industry will continue rescue operations, safe, legal, alternative pathways to migration must be developed, including safe, organized migration by sea, if necessary”

IMO Secretary-General Koji Sekimizu has welcomed the adoption by the United Nations Security Council of a UN Security Council resolution which authorizes Member States to intercept vessels suspected of migrant smuggling off the Libyan coast. “I welcome the United Nations Security Council’s clear affirmation of the necessity to put an end to the recent proliferation of, and endangerment of lives by, the smuggling of migrants and trafficking of persons in the Mediterranean Sea and the strong measures advocated to address these criminal activities,” Mr. Sekimizu said.

Working for Africa

Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

International Maritime Organization (IMO) has contributed to the latest meeting of United Nations bodies working in Africa – the RCM-Africa forum. The forum, which held its 18th session in Dakar, Senegal (25-26 March), provides a platform for all UN programmes and agencies to share information about their work in the continent and coordinate strategies to support African Union programmes. IMO shared information about its technical assistance activities in Africa, which form part…

N. Korean Ship Searched

According to an August 10 report from The New York Times, Indian authorities have detained a North Korean vessel and are searching it for radioactive material, the first time a ship has been seized and boarded under sanctions adopted by the United Nations Security Council in June. The cargo ship, M/V San, was spotted August 7, officials said, and detained under the authority of the United Nations. (Source: The New York Times)

Iran to Allow UN Inspection of Yemen Aid Ship

Iran will allow the United Nations to inspect an aid shipment to Yemen, the ISNA agency quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian as saying on Wednesday. "We have decided to dock our ship in Djibouti so the United Nations inspection protocol can take place," Abdollahian was quoted as saying by ISNA. Reporting by Sam Wilkin

One Million Migrants Traveled to Europe by Sea in 2015

More than one million refugees and migrants braved the seas in 2015 seeking sanctuary in Europe, nearly five times more than in the previous year, the United Nations' refugee agency said on Wednesday. About half of the 1,000,573 men, women and children who made the perilous journey came from war-torn Syria, while Afghans accounted for roughly a fifth, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees agency said in a statement. Most people who took to the water for Europe made their way on the Aegean Sea to Greece's islands from Turkey, it said. From Greece, many travel to wealthier western Europe. A photograph of a 3-year-old Syrian boy who drowned trying to reach Greece with his family in September appeared around the world, prompting sympathy and outrage over the refugee crisis.

UN to Start Inspecting Commercial Shipments to Yemen

The United Nations will start inspecting shipments to rebel-held ports in Yemen in a bid to boost commercial imports and enforce an arms embargo, the world body said on Tuesday, some eight months after announcing it would establish such a procedure. Yemen relies almost solely on imports, but a 14-month long conflict between Houthi rebels and a Saudi Arabian-led coalition has slowed to a trickle commercial shipments to the impoverished country where 80 percent of people need humanitarian aid. The United Nations announced in September it would set up a verification and inspection mechanism. Then in October U.N. aid chief Stephen O'Brien said the United Nations was still trying to raise some $8 million to fund the Djibouti-based operation. It began operations on Monday, U.N.

UNCTAD Releases Review of Maritime Transport 2002

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) released its Review of Maritime Transport, 2002

UN Keeps Vigil Eye On Iraqi Surcharge

There is no chance of the United Nations turning a blind eye to any oil companies that pay a surcharge that Iraq is continuing to demand for its oil exports, United Nations diplomats said. "No way are we going to be turning a blind eye to this," one diplomat said when asked if the United Nations could overlook such payments."Industry sources said that Iraq is insisting that customers for its crude under the United Nations oil-for-food program pay a 40 cents per barrel surcharge direct to an Iraqi account before liftings resume. Under U.N. rules all revenues from oil-for-food go direct to a U.N. escrow account. Iraq's oil exports have been stopped for ten days on disputes over payments.

Saudis Installing Cranes at Yemen Ports

Saudi Arabia said on Thursday it was installing four cranes at three ports in Yemen to help boost humanitarian aid deliveries and was ready to assist with installing cranes at the key port of Hodeidah once it was under control of a neutral party. The Saudi mission to the United Nations said in a statement that the cranes were being installed at the ports of Aden, Mukalla and Al-Mokha - which are all under the control of a Saudi-led military coalition fighting in Yemen. The coalition has said it was determined to help Yemen's government retake all areas of the country held by Houthi militia, including Hodeidah port, and would ensure alternative entry routes for badly needed food and medicine.

US Blacklists North Korean Shipping Firms

The United States on Wednesday blacklisted two North Korean shipping firms, Chongchongang Shipping and Ocean Maritime Management, following a similar move by the United Nations. The United Nations on Monday said Ocean Maritime Management operated a ship detained a year ago near the Panama Canal for smuggling Soviet-era arms, raising concerns about Cuba's military cooperation with North Korea. The new sanctions, published on the Treasury Department's website, freeze any assets the companies may hold in the United States and prohibit people and firms in the United States from dealing with them. (Reporting by Anna Yukhananov; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)

Cargill Partners with Four NGOs on Shipping Sustainability

 Photo: Cargill, Incorporated.

Dry bulk shipper Cargill said it is partnering with four NGOs to advance sustainability initiatives and increase accountability across the ocean shipping industry. The company said it has aligned with the Global Maritime Forum, the Maritime Anti-Corruption Network, the North American Environment Protection Association and the Women’s International Shipping and Trading Association in an effort to spearhead industry-wide progress toward safer and more efficient international shipping.

Masdar CEO Receives UN Eco Award

The award recognises Masdar's work in deploying renewable energy projects including Shams One, a 100MW concentrated solar power plant in Abu Dhabi; London Array, a 1GW offshore wind farm, and Gemasolar, a 20MW concentrating solar thermal plant. Abu Dhabi’s renewable energy company, Masdar, invests in clean technologies, deploys renewable energy projects and is building a city that adheres to the most rigorous sustainability standards. Masdar also invests in intellectual and human capital through the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology. Organised by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the award seeks to honour individuals whose actions and leadership have made a far-reaching positive impact on the environment. “I am honoured to be a recipient of this prestigious award.

Philippines Bans Foreign Research Ships

© Sergey Ryzhov / Adobe Stock

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has banned all foreign scientific research off the country's Pacific coast and told the navy to chase away unauthorised vessels, despite earlier allowing Chinese oceanographers to operate there. There was no clear explanation for the about-face by the mercurial Duterte, who has cultivated warm ties with China, ostensibly to attract loans and investments and lessen Manila's dependence on the United States. The area of focus is Benham Rise, which the United Nations in 2012 declared part of the Philippines' continental shelf.

Yemen Forces Prepare to Move on Main Port

Yemeni government forces and their Arab allies are massing north and south of the Houthi-held Red Sea port of Hodeidah despite United Nations and aid groups warnings that a military operation there would put millions of civilians at risk. Hodeidah port and province is controlled by the Iran-aligned Houthis and has been the entry point for 70 percent of Yemen's food supplies as well as humanitarian aid. The country has been torn by more than two years of civil war that pits the armed Houthi group against the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, which is backed by a Saudi-led Arab alliance. More than 10,000 people have been killed in the conflict and hunger is widespread.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Feb 2018 - Cruise Ship Annual

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