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Russia Suspects Greenpeace Activists Of Being Pirates

Thirty Greenpeace activists are being held in Russia for scaling a state-owned offshore oil platform as an act of protest against Russia’s energy exploration in the Arctic.


Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Peaceful actions are not piracy! Free our activists! http://t.co/lbMmeSkBhU #FreetheArctic30

/ Via

Thirty Greenpeace activists are being held by Russian authorities who are investigating them for acts of piracy, reported The New York Times.

The activists and crew members aboard a Greenpeace ship called Arctic Sunrise were attempting to scale an offshore oil platform owned by the Russian state energy giant Gazprom in the Arctic on Wednesday, Sept. 18. They were protesting against the potential environmental threats caused by Russia’s ambitious plans for energy expansion in the region.

After warning shots were fired from across the ship, the Russian Coast Guard detained all members of Greenpeace onboard. The Arctic Sunrise was then towed with the crew and activists on board to the seaport town of Murmansk where they are being investigated on potential charges of piracy.

A spokesman for Russia’s Investigative Committee, Vladimir I. Markin, said in a statement, “All those who carried out the attack on the platform will face criminal charges, regardless of their nationality.”

The crew included one American, six Britons, four Russians, two Canadians, two Dutch, two New Zealanders, two Argentines, and individuals from 12 other nations.

In a statement, Kumi Naidoo, the executive director of Greenpeace International, said, “Any charge of piracy against peaceful protests has no merit in international law. We will not be intimidated or silenced by these absurd accusations and demand the immediate release of our activists.”

Five Greenpeace International activists before they attempt to climb the Prirazlomnaya , the oil platform operated by Gazprom in Russia’s Pechora Sea, to stop it from becoming the first to produce oil from the ice-filled waters of the Arctic. AP

The five activists attempting to climb the Prirazlomnaya on Wednesday, Sept. 18. AP

BREAKING: Helicopter hovering above Arctic Sunrise, rope dropping down. We think the Coast Guard is boarding us. #SaveTheArctic

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

BREAKING: Helicopter hovering above Arctic Sunrise, rope dropping down. We think the Coast Guard is boarding us. #SaveTheArctic

/ Via

Our activists faced armed FSB agents who were clearly ordered to defend the rig and so that it could keep drilling in the #Arctic.

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Our activists faced armed FSB agents who were clearly ordered to defend the rig and so that it could keep drilling in the #Arctic.

/ Via

At the same time, the coast guard fired 11 shots across the bow of the Arctic Sunrise.

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

At the same time, the coast guard fired 11 shots across the bow of the Arctic Sunrise.

/ Via

BREAKING: This is what oil company 'protection' looks like in the Russian Arctic. #SavetheArctic

— kuminaidoo (@Kumi Naidoo)

Kumi Naidoo

@kuminaidoo

BREAKING: This is what oil company ‘protection’ looks like in the Russian Arctic. #SavetheArctic

/ Via

This image made available by environmental organization Greenpeace shows a Russian Coast Guard officer (center) pointing a knife at a Greenpeace International activist (left in yellow) as other activists attempt to climb the Prirazlomnaya. AP

Here's the message we received when the alarm went off on the #ArcticSunrise: #SaveTheArctic

— kuminaidoo (@Kumi Naidoo)

Kumi Naidoo

@kuminaidoo

Here’s the message we received when the alarm went off on the #ArcticSunrise: #SaveTheArctic

/ Via

Interfax reports that Arctic Sunrise, under tow, entered territorial waters of Russia. Arrival Murmansk within hours #FreeTheArctic30

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Interfax reports that Arctic Sunrise, under tow, entered territorial waters of Russia. Arrival Murmansk within hours #FreeTheArctic30

/ Via

The Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise was escorted by a Russian coast guard boat for four days before it reached the military base Severomorsk at dawn Tuesday, Sept. 24, on Russia’s Kola Peninsula, where Russian authorities detained the ship and crew. AP

Crew members onboard the Arctic Sunrise display a “Save The Arctic” banner they created while under tow by the Russian Coast Guard. AP

Dennis our photographer just sent this picture from the mess room on board #FreeTheArctic30

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Dennis our photographer just sent this picture from the mess room on board #FreeTheArctic30

/ Via

A view of Kola Bay and the seaport town of Murmansk on the Kola peninsula in Russia, where Russian authorities have taken the Arctic Sunrise and the crew for questioning. AP

In dark of night, Greenpeace crew is brought from their ship to the Investigative Committee #FreeTheArctic30

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

In dark of night, Greenpeace crew is brought from their ship to the Investigative Committee #FreeTheArctic30

/ Via

The Arctic 30 have arrived at the Murmansk Investigative Authority. Lawyers & diplomats still not allowed contact. Stay tuned.

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

The Arctic 30 have arrived at the Murmansk Investigative Authority. Lawyers & diplomats still not allowed contact. Stay tuned.

/ Via

Activists in good spirits as they arrive at Investigative Committee. Show them your support, RT! #FreeTheArctic30

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Activists in good spirits as they arrive at Investigative Committee. Show them your support, RT! #FreeTheArctic30

/ Via

Only 5 crew interviewed so far. Still no charges. Please keep the support through their night #FreetheArctic30 http://t.co/lbMmeSkBhU

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Only 5 crew interviewed so far. Still no charges. Please keep the support through their night #FreetheArctic30 http://t.co/lbMmeSkBhU

/ Via

People from all over the world have expressed their solidarity with the Greenpeace activists being held in Russia.

An Indonesian activist from Greenpeace holds a placard featuring pictures of Greenpeace activists being held by Russian officials during a protest outside the Russian embassy in Jakarta on Sept. 23. AFP / Getty Images

AFP / Getty Images

Arctic sea ice minimum 6th lowest in recorded history. Hey Russia, seize oil rigs, not activists #FreeTheArctic30

— kuminaidoo (@Kumi Naidoo)

Kumi Naidoo

@kuminaidoo

Arctic sea ice minimum 6th lowest in recorded history. Hey Russia, seize oil rigs, not activists #FreeTheArctic30

/ Via

Indonesian environmental activists from action group Greenpeace hold a banner to protest against the arrest of Greenpeace activists. AFP / Getty Images

Awesome! RT @4contodo: #FreeTheArctic30 From the caribbean to the arctic... No drilling in the arctic!

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Awesome! RT @4contodo: #FreeTheArctic30 From the caribbean to the arctic… No drilling in the arctic!

/ Via

More than 425,000 people have already signed Greenpeace’s petition.

Over 425,000 messages asking Russian authorities to #FreeTheArctic30 - Amazing! Add your voice now: http://t.co/lbMmeSkBhU

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

Over 425,000 messages asking Russian authorities to #FreeTheArctic30 - Amazing! Add your voice now: http://t.co/lbMmeSkBhU

/ Via

This is the BEST reaction to the claims of piracy we've heard yet! Peaceful protest is not piracy, #FreetheArctic30

— gp_sunrise (@Arctic Sunrise)

Arctic Sunrise

@gp_sunrise

This is the BEST reaction to the claims of piracy we’ve heard yet! Peaceful protest is not piracy, #FreetheArctic30

/ Via

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Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at tasneem.nashrulla@buzzfeed.com
 
 
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