WMD on 29 September 2011, was celebrated by the maritime community worldwide
World Maritime Day, 29 September 2011, was celebrated by the maritime community worldwide.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) chose “Piracy: orchestrating the response” as the theme, “to highlight and reflect upon the efforts made to meet the challenges of modern-day piracy”.
In London, England, the event was marked by the launch of a new cross-industry programme to support seafarers and their families affected by piracy, Maritime Piracy: a Humanitarian Response – see:
In his World Maritime Day message, IMO secretary-general Efthimios E Mitropoulos said that “no effort should be spared” to rid the seas of piracy. As well as preventative action by shipping companies, governments needed to deploy the military and other resources needed to deal with the problem, he said.
“More needs to be done, including the capture, prosecution and punishment of all those involved in piracy; the tracing of ransom money; and the confiscation of proceeds of crime derived from hijacked ships, if the ultimate goal of consigning piracy to the realms of history is to be achieved.”
In the Philippines, National Maritime Week, including World Maritime Day, was marked by calls on the government to ratify the Maritime Labour Convention – the international “seafarers’ bill of rights” that sets out minimum standards and fair working conditions for seafarers worldwide.
The call was made in a march though Manila by 7,000 seafarers and their families at the start of the week.
Archbishop Antonio Maria Veglio, president of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, said in a statement that the law was crucial to the country as Filipinos made up about 20 per cent of the world’s seafarers.
He also called on the Philippines government to approve the international Seafarers Identity Document Convention (185), which facilities seafarers’ access to shore facilities and shore leave.
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