The Singapore Port Authority seized the Russian ship Sevastopol, which was sanctioned by the United States, on the basis of debt, and hoped to obtain the court's permission to sell the ship, Russian news reported Tuesday. Russian diplomats responded that the incident had nothing to do with politics and was a commercial dispute.
Russian media said that in August 2018, the United States included two Russian companies and six Russian ships in the sanctions list, including sk gudzon and its ship Sevastopol. The U.S. Treasury Department claims that listed vessels are suspected of participating in the export of refined oil products to sanctioned countries.
"When the ship arrived in Singapore, the auxiliary engine failed," said Oleg anikin, deputy chief executive of Russia's Hudson shipping company. We contacted a repair company in Singapore, but most of the companies refused to repair the ship because of sanctions. "
"We tried to get the repairmen from Russia, but the Singapore authorities refused to let them on board under various excuses," anikin told Russian media. As a result, the vessel incurred debts due to the long berthing time, and the Hong Kong side subsequently seized the vessel. "
A spokesman for the Sevastopol also confirmed that the ship had been seized and could not leave the port. In addition, the vessel was unable to purchase fuel.
The spokesman also said that on December 17, the legal proceedings will begin, and Singapore hopes that the court can award them another ship, so as to get rid of US sanctions, but the Sevastopol will be sold by auction. There are 12 people on board. At present, they have food and electricity.
Russian news agency quoted Sergei novosev, spokesman of the Russian Embassy in Singapore, as saying Saturday that the incident of the "Sevastopol" ship in Singapore had nothing to do with politics. "It's purely a business dispute. The ship was seized for debt, not sanctions. The embassy is paying close attention to the situation and providing all possible help to the crew. " (Zhang Qi, overseas)