10 July 2013, 10:54

Russia deplores delay in Russian sailors' trial in Nigeria

нигерия моряки задержание судно Myre Seadiver

Russian Myre Seadiver's sailors 

Russian Myre Seadiver's sailors 

Russia has expressed "deep disappointment" over a ruling by a Nigerian court to postpone until October 8 its next hearing of the case against the Russian crew of the cargo ship Myre Seadiver, who were detained in Lagos in October of last year and accused of weapons trafficking.

 

"We assumed that all the Russian sailors would finally be acquitted after a careful study of the documents of the case by the Nigerian judiciary," Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"So far it has been possible to achieve the acquittal of eight of the Russian crew of the Myre Seadiver, who have returned to their country already.

Seven Russian crewmembers remain on the premises of the Russian Embassy's residential compound in Lagos in anticipation of the court decision," the ministry said.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation and the Russian Embassy in Abuja will continue legal and other support for our fellow citizens in firm expectation of a definitive verdict to release them," it said.

The Myre Seadiver, operated by a Russian crew of 15, was stopped at the Lagos port on October 19, 2012. Nigerian media reported that 14 Kalashnikov assault rifles, 42 rifles, and over 8,500 rounds of ammunition had been found on board the ship.

The vessel is now being held at a Nigerian naval base.

Moran Security Group said then that the ship's seizure was illegal as its arrival at the port had been announced in advance. It disclosed the fact that the ship was carrying weapons and ammunition.

Voice of Russia, Interfax

 

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