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Russia opens its waters to foreign-flagged ships

Russia has opened its inland waterways to foreign-flagged ships Russia has opened its inland waterways to foreign-flagged ships, following amendments to the Russian Inland Water Transport Code signed by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and posted on the Kremlin website on Thursday.The amendments were previously approved by both houses of Russia's parliament.The amendments allow navigation of foreign-flagged vessels in the Russian inland waterways for sporting, cultural and recreational purposes, if they carry no more than 18 people on board, including no more than 12 passengers. Navigation will be carried out in accordance with the regulations set by the Russian government.The crews of foreign-flagged ships must have all necessary documentation confirming the vessel's type and designation and the right to sail under the flag of the country they are registered in.All foreign-flagged ships are subject to compulsory pilotage in Russian inland waterways, unless otherwise stipulated in Russia's international treaties.The Russian government is empowered to approve the lists of ports and internal waterways open for foreign-flagged ships.Source: RIANOVOSTI

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Security advisory for Gulf of Guinea and surrounding ports and waterways

Attacks have been increasing off Cotonou Over the months of May and June 2011 attacks have been increasing off Cotonou, where vessels (especially tankers) have been reported hijacked for a few days.The hijacked vessels are forced to rendezvous with other local barges upon which cargo is stolen.As a reminder to members, the current security advisory for the Gulf of Guinea ishereby reproduced in BIMCO's security news.Introduction - the threats The Gulf of Guinea and the surrounding ports and waterways suffer from a substantial amount of maritime criminal activity, ranging from illegal fishing to piracy and militant activity against commercial assets. Piracy and maritime militant activity is particularly prevalent in the waters off Nigeria and in the Niger Delta. It ranges from simple boarding and robbery - especially in the waters off Lagos and within its ports - to attacks on ships and offshore facilities and the hijacking of vessels for ransom - most notable in the area near the Niger Delta.Robbers/pirates in the area sometimes wears uniforms. The behaviour of the robbers/pirates is often very violent towards the crew, because the purpose of the crime is to rob the valuables of the ship and crew, and normally not to hold ...

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