“The Commonwealth Maritime Administration of Dominica reports that the Motor Vessel AZBURG IMO Number 9102899 Call Sign J7BG6 MMSI Number 325116200 was indiscriminately attacked, sunk and completely destroyed while berthed in Mariupol, Ukraine.
The ship was hit by two missile shells while docked in the port of Mariupol, Ukraine on April 3, 2022 at 11:36 UTC. On April 4, 2022, at approximately 22:40 LT, the ship came under heavy fire from the Russian Armed Forces after intentionally shelling the ship twice the day before. The specific patterns of fire on the ship remain unknown, the crew reported repeated shelling, shelling and firing of missiles, causing a fire in the engine room. The Administration has received further reports of heavy fighting and heavy shelling in the port area by the Russian armed forces.
Photo from Vesselfinder.com.
On April 4, 2022, the Commonwealth of Dominica Maritime Administration was notified that following the attack and the spread of fire, the mv AZBURG sank at Pier 16 in the Port of Mariupol, Ukraine.
According to the border guard, the ship’s captain, 9,085 dwt Azburg made a distress call that his ship was on fire after being shelled. He said the ship’s deck was destroyed and they were hit in the engine room and taking on water. He ordered the crew to abandon ship.
Ukrainian maritime border guards reportedly assisted the injured and evacuated the crew to safety. They did, however, report that the fire was spreading through the ship as it continued to sink in the harbour. Due to the dangerous conditions associated with the continuous bombardment of the city, they declared it impossible to carry out a salvage operation for the ship.
The Commonwealth Maritime Administration of Dominica urges the Russian Federation to withdraw its forces from Ukraine and to abide by its obligations under relevant international treaties and conventions. The immediate evacuation of all civilians from the port of Mariupol, including the entire crew of the mv Azburg, must be organized with the highest degree of priority and urgency.
The Commonwealth of Dominica Maritime Administration would further like to emphasize the current risks facing the crew and the environment. People face the risk and reality of loss of life and/or serious injury and are likely to be deeply traumatized by current events. In addition, current events are seriously damaging the marine environment. Normal security requirements and (port) emergency response plans are currently not fully operational or absent altogether. Medical emergencies, firefighting operations, oil spill response, abandon ship and navigational safety are currently not sufficient or not possible at all.
We urgently call on all relevant United Nations, government and industry bodies to take immediate and direct action to address this serious issue for human health and welfare, safety and security of navigation. and prevention of marine and air pollution from ships.
All efforts to accelerate the establishment of humanitarian corridors, as decided at the thirty-fifth special session of the Council, must be undertaken and executed with the highest degree of priority and urgency. Resulting in enabling the safety of seafarers by allowing them to leave the conflict area immediately.
Eric R. Dawicki, Deputy Administrator of Maritime Affairs, Commonwealth Maritime Administration of Dominica said, “An act of war is an act of cowards, brutes and frail men. The indiscriminate bombardment of a merchant ship with a civilian crew with no place to hide is the worst of lows. It is an act of war against all humanity and fundamental human rights.
This administration deplores these attacks on a ship flying the flag of the Commonwealth of Dominica and urges that the emotionally and intellectually stunted men behind this heinous act look carefully in the mirror and figure out how to put an end to such insane motives. There’s nothing good that comes out of war – NOTHING!’ – Commonwealth of Dominica Maritime Administration.