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More than a hundred merchant ships cannot leave the territorial waters of Ukraine

Ukraine

The heads of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) have called for urgent action to protect seafarers and ships stranded in Ukrainian ports and nearby waters following the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

More than a hundred merchant ships cannot leave the territorial waters of Ukraine

ILO Director-General Guy Ryder and IMO Secretary-General Kitak Lim sent a letter to the heads of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Committee of the Red Cross and Médecins Sans Frontières.

In it, they described the plight of the sailors of more than a hundred merchant ships, who cannot leave the ports of Ukraine and nearby waters. According to the IMO, up to 1,000 sailors were trapped, including those in the besieged Mariupol and on ships in the Sea of ​​Azov. In this regard, the heads of the ILO and IMO call on the parties to the conflict to conclude a truce.

“Many ships are running out of food, fuel, drinking water and other vital supplies,” the letter says. “The current dangerous situation threatens the health and well-being of seafarers from many countries.”

The letter asks the three agencies to take urgent action to help re-equip ships with vital supplies.

At present, the International Labor Organization, the International Maritime Organization, the International Chamber of Shipping and the International Transport Workers' Federation are collecting information that is designed to remedy the current plight.

In March, the ILO Governing Body adopted a resolution calling on the Russian Federation to "immediately and unconditionally stop aggression against Ukraine."

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