Lyubov Orlova, Press release # 2
The decomissioned cruise ship Lyubov Orlova, now drifting in the Atlantic, is the responsibility of the Canadian authorities. Bearing the flag of the Cook Islands, the Lyubov Orlova was abandoned in the port of Saint John in Newfoundland in 2010, supposedly headed for demolition in the Dominican Republic after being sold by a Canadian broker to a Canadian resident of Iranian origins with interests in Saint-Domingue. Canada, the most recent country to harbour the cruise ship previously used for Arctic cruises, arranged for the Charlene Hunt, a tug boat constructed in 1962, to tow the ship on January 23. Shortly after the depart of the two ships, the tow cable broke, setting the Lyubov Orlova adrift. Due to security reasons, the Charlene Hunt was forced to return to the port of Saint-John. After the discovery of several deficiencies during the inspection of the vessel by the Canadian authorities, the Charlene Hunt must remain in port. Instead of inspecting the Charlene Hunt before its departure with the Lyubov Orlova in tow, as would have been in compliance with international maritime regulations, the Canadian authorities waited until after its return to port ; demonstrating a serious lack of foresight considering the requirements for a trans-oceanic towing.
In September of 2011, the Canadian Miner, left Montreal bound for Aliaga, Turkey, but instead ran aground on Scatarie Island, Nova Scotia after the cable connecting it to its tow boat snapped. The tow ship, the Hellas of Greece, underwent inspection before the departure and was held for several days in Montreal. Now, the wreck of the Canadian Miner threatens the local fishing industry as well as the environment as it remains exactly as it ran aground.
Canada now claims that they have no responsiblity for setting the Lyubov Orlova adrift, as the ship now lies in international waters. The rupture of the tow cable between the Lyubov Orlova and the Charlene Hunt happened in Canadian waters.
Canada vandalizes the Atlantic through their lack of observation of maritime security and the improper disposal of their ships. The high density of maritime traffic in the Atlantic, and existing high risk for collisions, demand the moblization of an international help and rescue mission to catch the Lyubov Orlova and move it to a secure place.