• Reinsurers set to bear brunt of costs for Suez Canal grounding | Reuters

    Ship Ever Given, one of the world’s largest container ships, is seen after it was fully floated in Suez Canal, Egypt March 29, 2021.
    REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany/File Photo

    Reinsurers are set to foot most of the bill for the grounding of the ship that halted traffic in the Suez Canal, industry sources said, with payouts expected to run into hundreds of millions of dollars.

    International supply chains were thrown into disarray when the 400 metre (430 yard) Ever Given ran aground in the canal on March 23, with specialist rescue teams taking almost a week to free the vessel.

    Around 400 vessels were affected by the canal’s closure, which led to some having to divert around Africa to get supplies to global markets.

    Ships typically have protection & indemnity (P&I) insurance, which covers third party liability claims including environmental damage and injury. Separate hull and machinery (H&M) policies cover vessels against physical damage.

    Alan Mackinnon, chief claims officer with UK Club, the Ever Given’s P&I insurer, said it expected a claim against the ship’s owner from the canal authorities for possible damage to the canal and for loss of revenues, and separately claims for compensation from some of the owners of the delayed ships.

    I expect we will get a claim from the Egyptian authorities quite soon and the claims from the other shipowners will trickle in over the coming months,” Mackinnon told Reuters.

    Suez Canal Authority chairman Osama Rabie said last month that losses and damages from the Ever Given blockage could reach around $1 billion, but that the actual amount would be calculated after the investigations, though it was unclear when this would be completed.

    The UK Club will cover the first $10 million of P&I losses.

    Beyond that, the wider pool of P&I insurers will cover up to $100 million, at which point re-insurers such as Lloyd’s of London step in for up to $2.1 billion of claims. P&I insurers would contribute for part of a further $1 billion of cover.

    When asked if claims could reach the upper levels of cover at $2.1 to $3.1 billion, UK Club’s Mackinnon said “we are confident we are not in that territory at all.

    This is not an existential moment for the P&I sector. It may be a large claim but we are structured to deal with large claims.

    Analysts at DBRS Morningstar said that total insured losses “will remain manageable given the relatively short period of time that the canal was blocked.

    Lloyd’s of London last week said the incident would likely result in a “large loss” for the commercial insurance and reinsurance market of at least $100 million.

    Yumi Shinohara, deputy manager of the fleet management department with Japan’s Shoei Kisen, the owner of Ever Given, said it had not received any compensation claims yet.

    Container ships of the Ever Given’s size usually have H&M insurance limits of $100-$140 million, brokers say.

    An insurance source in Tokyo, who declined to be named, said the three Japanese H&M insurers would pay for salvage costs and any repair fees for the hull. Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, the main Japanese hull insurer for the vessel, declined to comment.

    Other insurance sources said the Japanese hull underwriters would also spread their exposure with re-insurers.

  • Let us rebuild Beirut’s port in less than three years, says France’s CMA CGM | Reuters

    FILE PHOTO: A view shows the site of the August 4 explosion at Beirut port, Lebanon February 18, 2021.
    REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir/File Photo

    French container shipping group CMA CGM is pursuing a plan to rebuild Beirut’s port within three years, despite political deadlock in Lebanon that has prevented decisions on the port since a blast last August, a company executive said.

    A chemical explosion at the port killed 200 people and destroyed entire neighbourhoods, deepening Lebanon’s worst political and economic crisis since the 1975-1990 civil war.

    CMA CGM’s plan, first outlined to Lebanese authorities in September, envisages the reconstruction of damaged docks and warehouses, along with port expansion and digitalisation, at a total cost estimated at $400 million to $600 million, Joe Dakkak, general manager CMA CGM Lebanon, said on Saturday.

    Our offer remains on the table,” he told Reuters. “Our project is a realistic one because the situation is urgent.

    On Friday, German companies presented a separate multi-billion-dollar plan to rebuild Beirut’s port and neighbouring districts, confirming a previous report by Reuters.

    Dakkak said the German initiative was more focused on longer-term real-estate development but CMA CGM would be willing to contribute to the port part of that project if invited to.

    CMA CGM is controlled by the French-Lebanese Saade family and the group joined French President Emmanuel Macron in relief efforts in Beirut following the explosion last summer.

    The French government is not part of CMA CGM’s reconstruction plan, Dakkak said, adding French companies and financial institutions had shown interest, and that the Lebanese state would have a role through a public-private partnership.

    As well as devastating the bulk section of Beirut port, last year’s blast destroyed equipment in the container terminal. This has doubled waiting time for vessels, adding to longstanding inefficiencies at the port, according to Dakkak.

    CMA CGM is the leading shipping operator at Beirut port, accounting for 60% of volumes, and remains a candidate in partnership with Swiss-based MSC for the concession to run the container terminal, Dakkak said.

    It has been told a tender process to run the container terminal, held up by the political crisis, will be relaunched in two weeks, he added.

  • Dutch cargo ship adrift off Norway after dramatic rescue of crew | Reuters

    Dutch cargo ship Eemslift Hendrika lists as its crew is evacuated in stormy weather off the coast of Norway in the North Sea, April 5, 2021 in this still image obtained from social media video. Joint Rescue and Coordination Centre (JRCC) South-Norway via REUTERS

    OSLO (Reuters) - Emergency response teams scrambled on Tuesday to prevent a Dutch cargo ship adrift in the North Sea from sinking and causing an oil spill off Norway’s coast after the crew had to be evacuated in stormy weather.

    Footage released by the Norwegian Rescue Coordination Centre showed some of the 12 crew members jumping into the sea late on Monday from the badly listing Eemslift Hendrika before being rescued by helicopter. Others were hoisted directly from the deck.

    All were brought to safety, but the ship has continued to drift towards land. It is currently some 74 km (40 miles) off the Norwegian coast.

    The wind is expected to gradually shift the vessel to a course parallel to the shore, giving the salvage operation more time, Hans Petter Mortensholm of the Norwegian Coastal Administration told Reuters.

    Our calculations now indicate a window of opportunity to act, lasting until just after midday on Wednesday,” he said. “The risk of pollution is our main concern.

    The Hendrika has around 350 tonnes of heavy oil and 50 tonnes of diesel in its tanks, the Coastal Administration said.

    Smit Salvage, a subsidiary of the Dutch marine services company Boskalis, told Reuters it had been contracted to try saving the ship and was mobilising a team to send to Norway later on Tuesday.

    Safety permitting, Smit would seek to get its own crew on board the Hendrika and link the vessel to a so-called anchor handling tug, a powerful ship built to move rigs for the oil industry.

    Getting her onto a tow line and to a calmer location, that is the goal,” Smit Salvage spokesman Martijn Schuttevaer said.

    A Norwegian coastguard vessel is on standby in the area and could also be used for towing purposes, the Coastal Administration said.

    Built in 2015 and registered in the Netherlands, the 111.6 metre (366 feet) Eemslift Hendrika is a yacht transport vessel, carrying smaller boats on its deck, according to Monaco-based Starclass Yacht Transport, which markets the ship’s services.

    One of the smaller vessels strapped to the deck fell off in the storm, the Coastal Administration said.

  • Exclusive: Germany to propose Beirut port reconstruction with ’strings attached’ - sources | Reuters

    A view shows the site of the August 4 explosion at Beirut port, Lebanon February 18, 2021.
    REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir/File Photo

    Germany will next week present a multi-billion-dollar proposal to Lebanese authorities to rebuild the Port of Beirut as part of efforts to entice the country’s politicians to form a government capable of warding off financial collapse, two sources said.
    According to two diplomatic sources with knowledge of the plans, Germany and France are vying to lead reconstruction efforts. Berlin will on April 7 outline its proposal, which the diplomats said would in principle include support from the European Investment Bank (EIB), to help fund the clearing of the area and reconstruction facilities.

    An EIB spokesman said it was aware of the proposal put forward by the port of Hamburg and its consultancy team for the reconstruction of the port of Beirut and surrounding areas.

    However, there currently is no financing offer by the EIB. Any EIB financing would be subject to due diligence and have to follow the Bank’s usual processes for such operations,” he said.

    It would also need to comply with the EIB’s procurement guidelines, environmental and social standards, he said.

    The Bank stands ready to support the Lebanese people and reconstruction efforts as part of Team Europe and alongside its partners, the international community and all stakeholders.

    One of the sources estimated EIB funding could be in the range of 2 billion to 3 billion euros.

    Germany’s ambassador to Lebanon, Andreas Kindl, confirmed a proposal would be made next week to redevelop Beirut port and nearby areas. The plan had been drawn up by several private companies who would hold talks in Beirut to present it, he said.

    Consultancy firm Roland Berger, which Kindl and the diplomatic sources said had been involved in putting the plan together, did not respond to requests for comment.

    The two diplomatic sources said Lebanon’s political elite first need to agree on the make-up of a new government to fix public finances and root out corruption, a condition which donors, including the International Monetary Fund, are also insisting on before they will unlock billions of dollars in aid.

    This plan is not going to come without strings attached,” said one of the sources. “Germany and France want first to see a government in place committed to implementing reforms. There is no other way around it and this is good for Lebanon.
    The sources put the project cost at anywhere between $5 billion to $15 billion, and said it could create as many as 50,000 jobs.

    The Lebanese official said France and French ports and container shipping group CMA CGM were also interested in the reconstruction project.

    One of the diplomatic sources said that France had sent several missions, including one in March that included CMA CGM, that showed an interest in playing a role in the reconstruction. That mission focused on specific clear-up operations rather than a broader redevelopment, however, the source said.

    The French foreign ministry and CMA CGM declined to comment.

    The Lebanese official put the onus for getting the project underway on the Europeans agreeing who would be the lead.

    This is a European decision at the end of the day, because they have to decide on it among themselves. Then when it comes to it, the Lebanese government can go ahead,” the official said.

  • Suez Canal must upgrade quickly to avoid future disruption -shipping sources | Reuters

    Egypt’s Suez Canal must move quickly to upgrade its technical infrastructure if it is to avoid future shipping disruption, shipping industry sources said, as the major trade route tries to bounce back from a costly six-day closure.

    International supply chains were thrown into disarray on March 23 when the 400-metre-long (430-yard) container ship Ever Given ran aground in the canal, with specialist rescue teams taking almost a week to free her after extensive dredging and repeated tugging operations.

    Egypt will get two new tugboats, one next week and one in August, Suez Canal Authority (SCA) chairman Osama Rabie said after the ship was finally freed, as well as taking the biggest dredger in the Middle East and arranging for a further five new Chinese tugboats.

    But shipping industry sources said specialist equipment and associated procedures have long struggled to keep up with the ever increasing size of commercial vessels.

    The average size of most vessels has increased exponentially over the last 15 years. The ability to salvage these bigger ships has not,” said Peter Townsend, a marine insurance industry veteran.

    The issue is getting containers off essentially a 20-storey high building at sea.

    Michael Kingston, an international shipping specialist and an adviser to the United Nation’s International Maritime Organization, flagged such problems in 2013, three years before the MSC Fabiola container ship ran aground, also blocking traffic for days.

    The obvious way to lighten a vessel ... is to take the containers off. They had no way of doing it. No equipment was readily available,” he said of the Ever Given incident.

    The SCA says the canal can safely take vessels of the Ever Given’s size - with a maximum capacity of 20,000 TEU (20-foot containers) - even in rough weather.

    As well as bigger tugboats, dredgers and offloaders, stricter guidelines on how ships transit the canal are needed, the industry sources said. Those could include using tugs to assist large vessels, or only permitting transit during daylight hours.

    Of course, there are many lessons learned from the (Ever Given) incident. Of course we have the capabilities,” the SCA’s Rabie said.

    Visiting the canal this week, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said: “We have to give a strong message to the world that the Suez Canal ... can transport world trade at this rate or more.

    It was not clear yet if the Canal would opt to extend a second channel south of the one that Egypt opened in 2015 at a cost of $8 billion along a 70-km portion of the waterway. Such an extension would allow traffic to continue flowing even if a ship were grounded.

    An expansion for the southern section of the canal can be under consideration,” said Sisi. “It’s up to the technical people. We don’t want to take measures just due to extraordinary situations.

  • Egypt Suez Canal Authority May Seek $1Bln ’Ever Given’ Ship Crisis Compensation - Bloomberg

    • ‘This is the right of the country,’ says Canal Authority chief
    • Ship blockage caused the nation to lose revenue, says SCA

    Egypt said it may seek around $1 billion in compensation after a giant container vessel blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week and roiled shipping markets.

    The figure is a rough estimate of losses linked to transit fees, damage to the waterway during the dredging and salvage efforts, and the cost of equipment and labor, the Suez Canal Authority’s chief executive officer, Osama Rabie, said late Wednesday to local television channel Sada Elbalad.

    He did not specify who the Canal Authority would seek compensation from.

    This is the right of the country,” Rabie said, adding that the incident hurt Egypt’s reputation. “This country should get its due.

    The 400-meter-long Ever Given ship, owned by Japan’s Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd., ran aground on March 23 in the southern part of the canal and was freed six days later.

    Taiwan’s Evergreen Marine Corp., the vessel’s charterer, said Thursday it’s not responsible for delays of any cargo it was transporting.

    There is almost no chance that we will be sought to pay compensation,” Evergreen Marine President Eric Hsieh said at a briefing in Taipei.

    Shoei Kisen will discuss compensation with the Canal Authority, but will refrain from giving details for now, according to a spokesperson.

    Bitter Lake
    The ship and its cargo are currently in the Great Bitter Lake, roughly halfway along the canal.

    While they could be held in Egypt if the matter of compensation goes to court, such a scenario is unlikely, Rabie said.

    It may take until Friday night or Saturday to clear the backlog of hundreds of ships that built up while the canal was shut, Rabie said in a separate interview with Egyptian television.

    • Suez blockage may lead to large reinsurance claims, broker Willis Re says | Reuters

      FILE PHOTO: A view shows Ever Given container ship in Suez Canal in this Maxar Technologies satellite image taken on March 29, 2021.
      Satellite image ©2021 Maxar Technologies/Handout via REUTERS

      The blockage of the Suez Canal is likely to lead to large reinsurance claims, adding to upward pressure on marine reinsurance rates, James Vickers, chair of reinsurance broker Willis Re International, told Reuters.

      Formal investigations began this week into how the giant container ship Ever Given ran aground in the canal, shutting down shipping in the major global waterway for almost a week.

      The incident and its impact on hundreds of ships delayed in the canal would be a “large loss” for insurance market Lloyd’s of London, its chairman Bruce Carnegie-Brown said this week, while Fitch Ratings said global reinsurers were likely to face hundreds of millions of euros of claims.

      Vickers also said reinsurance losses were “not going to be a small amount of money”. The blockage was the latest in a growing number of man-made disasters leading to reinsurance losses, on top of a list of natural catastrophes in the past year, he said.

      Reinsurers help insurers cover claims for major events such as hurricanes, in return for part of the premium. Reinsurers typically raise rates after they experience large losses.

      Even before the Suez incident, the marine market “didn’t need much encouragement to keep going in an upward direction”, Vickers said.

      Global marine reinsurance rates were generally seeing “high single digit” percentage point increases, Willis Re said in its April reinsurance renewals report on Thursday.

      Marine reinsurance premiums have been rising for the past few years after several years of falling rates, as Lloyd’s of London and other firms have cut back on loss-making lines, reducing competition. The COVID-19 pandemic has also put upward pressure on reinsurance rates across the board.

      Elsewhere, the U.S. property reinsurance market has been hit by a number of catastrophes including Winter Storm Uri in the United States in February, with rates up by as much as 25% in April, the report showed.

  • Un porte-conteneurs s’échoue et bloque le canal de Suez - Nice-Matin

    Un porte-conteneurs géant s’est échoué dans le canal de Suez après avoir été déporté par une rafale de vent, a annoncé mercredi la compagnie maritime qui l’opère, et le trafic maritime s’est arrêté sur l’une des routes commerciales les plus fréquentées du monde.

    • analyse de la situation de l’Ever Given


      Je reprends ici mes différentes réponses à ce tweet :
      #1 - Causes :
      J’ai pas d’info, mais d’expérience, une erreur humaine est très peu probable (rien ne l’indique ici). L’environnement ne peut pas créer ça tout seul. Il ne reste qu’un problème mécanique.
      Ça impliquerait que le contrôle de la manœuvre du navire soit perdue : soit avarie de barre, soit perte totale de la propulsion, soit un moteur (principal ou prop d’étrave) qui s’emballe de façon incontrôlée - rare).
      #2 - Dégâts au navire
      Ces bateaux sont costauds, et le bulbe (à l’avant) peut être écrasé sans couler le bateau. Les berges du canal ne sont pas rocheuses, d’ailleurs. Donc la coque va sûrement « pas trop mal » dans le sens où le bateau n’est pas coulé sur place.

      Par contre il est bien monté sur la berge (cf l’assiette, visible à la ligne de flottaison). Donc il est possible que certains apparaux de coque à l’avant soient touchés (prises d’eaux, etc). Si la réfrigération est bouchée par exemple, c’est vite la galère pour les moteurs.
      Plus grave : à la poupe, si les hélices ou le gouvernail se sont trop rapprochés de la berge ou du fond, ça pue. Notamment si on voile une ligne d’arbre ou une mèche. Ça peut signifier un passage au bassin rapidement après déchargement.
      #3 - situation des autres navires
      Le canal est fait pour gérer des zones d’attentes aux deux extrémités et le long de ses berges internes. Les bateaux vont donc accoster ou mouiller (et l’autorité du canal va donc facturer un max). Rien de bien inquiétant techniquement.
      #4 - évolution probables
      Il faut éviter à tout pris le déchargement sur place. D’abord parce que l’idée d’alléger le bateau pourrait le faire chavirer, et que ce n’est pas nécessaire. Ensuite parce qu’il n’y a pas d’infrastructures pour le faire.
      Il faudrait commencer par couler du béton armé sur les berges, puis faire venir d’immenses grues, et 10000 camions pour décharger. Ou tout faire par l’eau. Rien de simple.
      Le mieux est donc de contrôler l’étanchéité de la coque (par plongeurs et/ou de l’intérieur), de dégager le bulbe (coucou le ptit tractopelle), puis de procéder au déséchouage.

      Ce qui sera sûrement choisi, c’est une manœuvre ou l’on remorquera par le cul du navire, en tirant dessus avec un gros remorqueur, pendant que deux remorqueurs (minimum) seront en pousseurs sur l’avant de chaque bord, et un dernier en remorque inverse côté cul, pour freiner.

      Une fois déséchoué, j’imagine que le navire sera remorqué (avec ou sans aide de sa propre propulsion) vers l’extrémité du canal (Port Saïd).
      Là, des réparations et vérifications seront entreprises. Si besoin, des containers seront déchargés (si besoin d’une immobilisation longue)

      C’est sûrement le moment où la Suez Canal Authority procèdera à une très généreuse facturation (déjà qu’en temps normal, ça douille …). Le Canal est l’une des principales ressources du pays (surtout en ces temps de disette touristique).

      #5 - Plus grave ?
      Oui, toujours possible, même si rien ne l’indique encore. C’est déjà assez grave (et rare), mais ne sera pas un phénomène majeur pour le commerce mondial.
      Si le canal devait être bloqué plus d’une semaine par exemple, chacun d’entre nous devrait ressentir rapidement notre dépendance au canal (pétrole du Golfe et produits chinois en tout genre : tout passe par là !).
      Voilà. N’hésitez pas si vous avez d’autres questions !
      Ah et si vous voulez de l’accident plus grave, et plus débile (= impardonnable erreur humaine selon moi), n’hésitez pas à retrouver mon thread sur le Helge Ingstad ici :

    • À noter, en milieu d’après-midi, Le Monde (et d’autres médias) présentaient l’affaire comme étant en voie de règlement. On en trouve la trace dans la formulation initiale de l’adresse de l’article… (Le canal de Suez bloqué [plusieurs heures] à cause d’un cargo échoué en travers)
      et dans la formulation hybride du chapeau (_s’était retrouvé
      , plus que parfait)

      Le canal de Suez bloqué à cause d’un cargo échoué en travers

      Le porte-conteneurs «  Ever Given  » s’était retrouvé en travers du canal reliant la mer Rouge à la Méditerranée, bloquant toute circulation. Le retour à la normale n’était pas acquis en milieu de journée.

      L’article expliquait que le navire avait été amarré parallèlement à la berge.

    • Suez Canal Block: How to Dislodge a 200,000 Ton Ship From a Canal Wall - Bloomberg

      When you can’t shift a ship that’s stuck fast into the wall of a canal that’s vital to world trade, there’s only one thing to do: call the salvage guys.

      The Ever Given container ship — a 200,000-ton behemoth — has been blocking what is arguably the world’s most important waterway, the Suez Canal, since Tuesday morning.

      The struggle to dislodge it is now turning the world’s attention to the work of SMIT Salvage, a legendary Dutch firm whose employees parachute themselves from one ship wreckage to the next, saving vessels often during violent storms. The company is synonymous with some of the most daring naval salvages, including lifting a sunken Russian nuclear submarine in 2001, and removing fuel from inside the Costa Concordia cruise ship after it ran aground in Italy in 2012.

      SMIT, a unit of Royal Boskalis Westminster NV, is one of the companies appointed by Ever Given’s owner to help move the vessel. The first job will be to work out exactly how entrenched in the wall the ship is, said Boskalis spokesman Martijn Schuttevaer.

      A digger clears the area around the bow of the stuck Ever Given container vessel in the Suez Canal on March 25.
      Source: Suez Canal Authority

      It will be critical to inspect the vessel and how deeply it is lodged in the embankment,” Schuttevaer said. “The question is how solidly she has been grounded.

      The answer to that question will dictate what comes next. The salvors could have to find a way to lighten the vessel’s enormous weight so that it can be pulled to a less obstructive position. At the moment, it’s blocking the path of more than 100 vessels.

      The canal handles something like 10% of seaborne trade, spanning everything from finished goods to oil, gas, and dry-bulk commodities. And those cargoes aren’t flowing while the Ever Given is stuck.

      The process of making the ship lighter means removing things like the ballast water, which helps keep ships steady when they’re at sea. Fuel will probably have to be unloaded too, Schuttavaer said.

      The stuck Ever Given container ship in the Suez Canal on March 25.
      Source: Suez Canal Authority

      In a worst-case scenario, it could be that some of the carrier’s containers — usually filled with everything from furniture to televisions — may have to be taken off. How long that process lasts would depend on how much equipment is around to do the heavy lifting. It can often involve flying in helicopters to remove the crates one by one.

      SMIT was due to fly an 8-person team in at dawn Thursday local time to board and inspect the vessel and the grounding. A big part of the initial underwater assessment is how much the banks slope at that point in the canal. Japan’s Nippon Salvage Co. has also been hired to assist in the re-floating, according to a person familiar with the matter.

      Such teams are usually led by a salvage master, often a former captain or someone with knowledge of the industry, but can also include divers, welders and crane operators, according to Joseph Farrell III, director of business development at Resolve Marine, another company that offers salvage services. He declined to comment specifically on the Ever Given.

      Stern Test
      Pictures now seen across the globe of the vessel spread fully across the canal, point to the first major hurdle. It ran aground both at the front and at the back, almost perpendicular to the canal walls. That’s leaving very little room to simply tow it away from either end, SMIT says.

      For now, the focus is on dredging around the vessel. The canal authority has dispatched two of its dredgers, the Mashor and the 10th of Ramadan, to remove sand from underwater before rescuers attempt to pull it. From the shore, excavators are also working around the vessel. Western shipping experts who analysed photos of the Ever Given calculated that her protruding bulb was as much as 5 meters buried into the canal wall.

      The container vessel MV Ever Given blocks the Suez Canal on March 24.
      Source: Planet Labs Inc. via AP Photo

      Not everything in the grounding has been bad news. One thing that’s likely to make the process easier is that the ship has gotten itself stuck in sand, rather than rock. More malleable material around the Ever Given should make for a slightly smoother escape.

      There are already tug boats around the ship working to help with its removal, but with such a giant vessel, bigger ones with more horsepower are usually needed. Crews are hoping that periods of higher tide over the next few days will be conducive to helping free the Ever Given.

      Until then, the world’s commodity and maritime markets — and the world trade they serve — will be left hanging, waiting on the professionals to help shift a 200,000-ton ship.

      There’s only a few companies in the world that do what we do,” said Farrell. “It’s a challenge, the container ships are always the biggest jobs.

    • Suez Canal could be blocked for weeks by ’beached whale’ ship | Reuters

      A huge container ship blocking the Suez Canal like a “beached whale” may take weeks to free, the salvage company said, as officials stopped all ships entering the channel on Thursday in a new setback for global trade.

      The 400 metre Ever Given, almost as long as the Empire State Building is high, is blocking transit in both directions through one of the world’s busiest shipping channels for oil and refined fuels, grain and other trade linking Asia and Europe.

      Late on Thursday, dredgers were still working to remove thousands of tonnes of sand from around the ship’s bow.

      The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) said earlier that nine tugs were working to move the vessel, which got stuck diagonally across the single-lane southern stretch of the canal on Tuesday morning amid high winds and a dust storm.

      We can’t exclude it might take weeks, depending on the situation,” Peter Berdowski, CEO of Dutch company Boskalis, one of two rescue teams trying to free the ship, told the Dutch television programme “Nieuwsuur”.

      A total of 206 large container ships, tankers carrying oil and gas, and bulk vessels hauling grain have backed up at either end of the canal, according to tracking data, creating one of the worst shipping jams seen for years.

      The blockage comes on top of the disruption to world trade already caused in the past year by COVID-19, with trade volumes hit by high rates of ship cancellations, shortages of containers and slower handling speeds at ports.

      The world’s number one line A.P. Moller Maersk said it was considering diverting vessels around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope, adding five to six days to the journey between Asia and Europe. It said time-sensitive cargo could be sent on trains and airplanes, although no decisions had yet been made.

      The SCA, which had allowed some vessels to enter the canal in the hope the blockage could be cleared, said it had temporarily suspended all traffic on Thursday. Maersk said in a customer advisory it had seven vessels affected.

      Berdowski said the ship’s bow and stern had been lifted up against either side of the canal.

      Explainer: How a giant container ship is blocking the Suez Canal
      It is like an enormous beached whale. It’s an enormous weight on the sand. We might have to work with a combination of reducing the weight by removing containers, oil and water from the ship, tug boats and dredging of sand.

      Dredging work to remove 15,000-20,000 cubic metres of sand surrounding the bow continued after dark on Thursday, in coordination with the team from Boskalis subsidiary Smit Salvage, the SCA said.

      The dredging work, which began on Wednesday evening and has involved two dredgers, aims to return the ship to a draft of 12-16 metres at which it could be refloated, the authority said.

      (Graphic: Suez blockade - )

      Japanese shipowner Shoei Kisen apologised for the incident and said work on freeing the ship, which was heading to Europe from China, “has been extremely difficult” and it was not clear when the vessel would float again.

      Another official with knowledge of the operation said that was likely to take days. “If you end up in the scenario that you have to remove cargo then you are looking at a time consuming exercise,” he said, declining to be named.

      A higher tide due on Sunday may help the rescue efforts.

      However, the Egyptian meteorological authority is also warning of a “disruption of marine navigation” due to an expected sea storm on Saturday and Sunday, with winds forecast to reach up to 80 kph (50 mph) and waves up to 6 metres high along the Red Sea and the Gulf of Suez.

      Roughly 30% of the world’s shipping container volume transits through the 193 km (120 mile) Suez Canal daily, and about 12% of total global trade of all goods.

      Slideshow ( 5 images )

      Every port in Western Europe is going to feel this,” Leon Willems, a spokesman for Rotterdam Port, Europe’s largest, said. “We hope for both companies and consumers that it will be resolved soon.

      Consultancy Wood Mackenzie said the biggest impact was on container shipping, but there were also a total of 16 laden crude and product oil tankers due to sail through the canal and now delayed.

      The tankers were carrying 870,000 tonnes of crude and 670,000 tonnes of clean oil products such as gasoline, naphtha and diesel, it said.

      Russia and Saudi Arabia are the top two exporters of oil through the canal, while India and China are the main importers, oil analytics firm Vortexa said. Consultancy Kpler said the canal accounted for only 4.4% of total oil flows but a prolonged disruption would complicate flows of Russian and Caspian oil to Asia and oil from the Middle East into Europe.

      The impact on oil prices has been limited so far as the destination of most oil tankers is Europe, where demand is currently weaker due to a new round of lockdowns. [O/R]

      The deputy managing director of Germany’s BDI industry association, Holger Loesch, expressed concern, saying earlier shipping holdups were already affecting output, especially in industries depending on raw materials or construction supplies.

      About 16% of Germany’s chemicals imports arrive by ship via the Suez canal and the chief economist for the association of German chemicals and pharmaceuticals producers VCI, Henrik Meincke, said they would be affected with every day of blockage.

      The owner and insurers face claims totalling millions of dollars even if the ship is refloated quickly, industry sources said on Wednesday. Shoei Kisen said the hull insurer of the group is MS&AD Insurance Group while the liability insurer is UK P&I Club.

    • Canal de Suez : le navire débloqué ce samedi soir ? - Monde - Le Télégramme

      Le porte-conteneurs est bloqué depuis mardi dans le canal de Suez.
      Photo EPA

      Le navire qui empêche la navigation sur le canal de Suez depuis mardi pourrait être débloqué ce samedi soir, a déclaré son propriétaire.

      Yukito Higaki, le propriétaire du porte-conteneurs qui obstrue depuis mardi le canal de Suez, a dit avoir bon espoir que le navire soit débloqué dès ce samedi soir, alors que des jours voire des semaines étaient précédemment évoqués. « Nous sommes en train d’éliminer les sédiments, avec des outils de dragage supplémentaires », a déclaré vendredi Higaki, le président de la compagnie japonaise Shoei Kisen. Il a dit espérer un déblocage du Ever Given pour « demain (samedi) soir », c’est-à-dire dans la nuit de samedi à dimanche au Japon. « Le navire ne prend pas l’eau. Il n’y a aucun problème avec ses gouvernails et ses hélices. Une fois qu’il aura été renfloué, il devrait pouvoir fonctionner », a ajouté le dirigeant.

      10 % du commerce maritime international
      La société mandatée pour le « sauvetage » de l’Ever Given s’était auparavant montrée plus prudente, évoquant « des jours voire des semaines » pour assurer le déblocage du navire et la reprise du trafic sur le canal qui voit passer 10 % du commerce maritime international, selon des experts.

      Depuis mercredi, l’Autorité égyptienne du canal de Suez (SCA) tente de dégager ce navire de plus de 220 000 tonnes et d’une longueur équivalente à quatre terrains de football, coincé dans le sud du canal, à quelques kilomètres de la ville de Suez. Une opération menée vendredi par la SCA avec l’aide de remorqueurs « n’a pas réussi », a indiqué la Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM), compagnie basée à Singapour qui assure la gestion technique du navire. « Deux remorqueurs (égyptiens) supplémentaires de 220 à 240 tonnes » doivent arriver d’ici dimanche pour une nouvelle tentative, selon cette société.

    • Mega-ship in Suez Canal moved ’80%’ in right direction

      The Ever Given was turned away from the bank of Suez Canal on Monday, raising hopes it could be soon be refloated

      la poupe a pu être dégagée, semble-t-il.
      il va falloir hâler fort en arrière pour dégager la proue (et le bulbe, bien planté…)

    • MV Ever Given Partially Refloated in Suez; Ship Still Blocking Canal – gCaptain

      Screen shot shows the position of the MV Ever Given following reports that the ship had been refloated. Taken Mar 23, 04:17 UTC.
      Credit: VesselFinder.com

      The giant container ship blocking the Suez Canal has been at least partially refloated, the first step toward getting one of the world’s most important trade arteries moving again.

      The Ever Given was successfully refloated at about 4:30 a.m. local time in Egypt and the vessel is currently being secured, maritime services provider Inchcape Shipping Services said in an email. It followed a new attempt to dislodge the ship involving 10 tug boats, according to the Suez Canal Authority.

      There was no immediate clarity on the crucial question of when traffic in the canal will restart. The ship has a damaged hull and it’s not clear how soon it will be able to clear the way for other vessels to pass.

  • La CPI ouvre une enquête sur des crimes de guerre présumés dans les Territoires palestiniens
    Publié le : 03/03/2021

    Une enquête sur des soupçons de crimes de guerre commis par les forces israéliennes, le Hamas et des groupes armés palestiniens dans les Territoires palestiniens va être lancée par la Cour pénale internationale (CPI). Israël a qualifié cette annonce de « décision politique », l’Autorité palestinienne a salué une enquête « nécessaire ».

    La procureure générale de la Cour pénale internationale (CPI), Fatou Bensouda, a annoncé mercredi 3 mars avoir ouvert une enquête sur des crimes présumés commis dans les Territoires palestiniens occupés. Israël s’était fermement opposé à l’ouverture de possibles enquêtes.

    Fatou Bensouda avait précédemment déclaré qu’il y avait un « fondement raisonnable » à croire que des crimes avaient été commis par des membres des forces israéliennes, des autorités israéliennes, du Hamas et des groupes armés palestiniens au cours de la guerre de Gaza de 2014.

    « Aujourd’hui, je confirme l’ouverture par le Bureau du procureur de la Cour pénale internationale d’une enquête sur la situation en Palestine », a-t-elle déclaré dans un communiqué. « L’enquête portera sur les crimes relevant de la compétence de la Cour qui auraient été commis dans la situation depuis le 13 juin 2014. » (...)


    • Washington « s’oppose fermement » à l’enquête de la CPI
      AFP - 3 mars 2021

      Pour Washington, la Cour qui siège à La Haye n’est « pas compétente » car l’État hébreu n’a pas signé le Traité de Rome qui lui a donné naissance et la Palestine « n’est pas un État souverain ».

      Les États-Unis « s’opposent fermement » à l’enquête ouverte par la procureure de la Cour pénale internationale (CPI) sur des crimes présumés, imputés notamment à Israël, dans les territoires palestiniens occupés, a déclaré mercredi le porte-parole de la diplomatie américaine, Ned Price.

      « Nous nous opposons fermement à l’annonce par les procureurs de la CPI d’une enquête sur la situation palestinienne et nous en sommes déçus », a-t-il dit devant la presse. « Nous continuerons à soutenir fermement Israël et sa sécurité, notamment en nous opposant à des actions qui visent Israël de manière injuste », a-t-il ajouté.

      Il a de nouveau estimé que la Cour qui siège à La Haye n’était « pas compétente » car l’État hébreu n’a pas signé le Traité de Rome qui lui a donné naissance et la Palestine « n’est pas un État souverain ». « Les États-Unis ont toujours estimé que la compétence de la Cour devait se borner aux pays qui la lui accordent ou alors en cas de saisine par le Conseil de sécurité de l’ONU », a-t-il insisté. (...)

    • ICC prosecutor to probe war crimes in Palestinian Territories, angering Israel | Reuters

      FILE PHOTO: Female Palestinian medic Razan Al-Najar reacts to tear gas as she works at the scene of clashes at Israel-Gaza border, in the southern Gaza Strip April 1, 2018. Picture taken April1, 2018. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/File Photo

      The decision follows a ruling by the court on Feb. 5 that it has jurisdiction in the case, prompting swift rejections by Washington and Jerusalem.

      “The decision to open an investigation followed a painstaking preliminary examination undertaken by my office that lasted close to five years,” Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said in a statement.

      Promising a “principled, non-partisan, approach”, she said: “In the end, our central concern must be for the victims of crimes, both Palestinian and Israeli, arising from the long cycle of violence and insecurity that has caused deep suffering and despair on all sides.”

      Bensouda, who will be replaced by British prosecutor Karim Khan on June 16, said in December 2019 that war crimes had been or were being committed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. She named both the Israel Defense Forces and armed Palestinian groups such as Hamas as possible perpetrators.

      The next step will be to determine whether Israeli or Palestinian authorities have investigations themselves and to assess those efforts.


      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the court’s decision was “undiluted anti-Semitism and the height of hypocrisy.”

      He accused the court of turning “a blind eye” to Iran, Syria and other countries that he said were committing “real” war crimes.

      “Without any jurisdiction, it decided that our brave soldiers, who take every precaution to avoid civilian casualties against the worst terrorists in the world who deliberately target civilians, it’s our soldiers who are war criminals,” Netanyahu said in a statement.

      Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi said the decision was “morally bankrupt and legally flawed,” while Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., Gilad Erdan, vowed to “continue working together with the American administration against this shameful decision.”

      The U.S. State Department said Washington firmly opposes and is disappointed by the announcement, adding that the United States has serious concerns over the ICC’s attempts to exercise jurisdiction over Israel.

      “We will continue to uphold our strong commitment to Israel and its security, including by opposing actions that seek to target Israel unfairly, the ICC ... has no jurisdiction over this matter,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters.

      The prosecutor’s office was targeted by sanctions under then-U.S. President Donald Trump. Washington opposes the ICC investigation in Afghanistan, which is also looking at the role of U.S. forces, and the Palestinian Territories inquiry.

      The Palestinian Authority’s foreign ministry welcomed the prosecutor’s investigation as “a long-awaited step that serves Palestine’s tireless pursuit of justice and accountability, which are indispensable pillars of the peace the Palestinian people seek and deserve”

      It urged all states to “refrain from politicizing these independent proceedings.”

      George Giacaman, a Palestinian political analyst and professor at Birzeit University in the occupied West Bank, said the ICC decision showed the Palestinian leadership’s strategy of appealing to global institutions had had some success.

      While cautioning that the probe could take years, Giacaman said: “At best, one can say that in the future, the Israelis will be more careful with hitting Palestinian civilians. Perhaps the ICC will prove to be a deterrent.”

      The Islamist militant group Hamas, which controls Gaza and is regarded as a terrorist organisation by Israel, the United States and the European Union, defended its own actions in the conflict.

      “We welcome the ICC decision to investigate Israeli occupation war crimes against our people. It is a step forward on the path of achieving justice,” said Hazem Qassem, a Hamas spokesman in Gaza.

      Rights groups said the decision offered victims hope of justice. Balkees Jarrah, associate international justice director at Human Rights Watch, said ICC member countries should be ready to protect the court’s work from any political pressure.The ICC is a court of last resort established to prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide when a country is unable or unwilling to do so.

      The pro-Israel lobbying group AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, urged President Joe Biden to maintain the sanctions on ICC officials pursuing what it called “illegitimate, politically motivated investigations into the U.S. and Israel.”

      Reporting by Stephanie van den Berg; Additional reporting by Ali Sawafta in Ramallah, Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza, Rami Ayyub in Tel Aviv, Stephen Farrell in Jerusalem and Humeyra Pamuk in Washington; Writing by Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Toby Chopra, Nick Macfie, Timothy Heritage and Jonathan Oatis

      Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

    • Déclaration : 3 March 2021
      Déclaration du Procureur de la CPI, Mme Fatou Bensouda, à propos d’une enquête sur la situation en Palestine

      Aujourd’hui, je confirme l’ouverture d’une enquête par le Bureau du Procureur (le « Bureau ») de la Cour pénale internationale (la « CPI » ou la « Cour ») à propos de la situation en Palestine. Cette enquête portera sur les crimes relevant de la compétence de la Cour qui auraient été commis dans le cadre de cette situation depuis le 13 juin 2014, date à laquelle le renvoi de la Situation en Palestine à mon Bureau fait référence.

      Le Bureau déterminera, en temps voulu, la façon dont il fixera les priorités dans son enquête, à la lumière des difficultés liées aux opérations auxquelles nous sommes confrontés en raison de la pandémie, des ressources limitées dont nous disposons et de la lourde charge de travail qui pèse sur nous. Toutefois, ces difficultés, aussi redoutables et complexes soient elles, ne parviendront, en définitive, en aucun cas à détourner le Bureau des responsabilités qui lui incombent au regard du Statut de Rome.

      Conformément au Statut de Rome, le Bureau du Procureur est tenu d’agir lorsqu’un État partie lui défère une situation et qu’il est établi qu’il existe une base raisonnable pour ouvrir une enquête. Dans un premier temps, il doit le notifier à tous les États parties et aux États qui auraient normalement compétence à l’égard des crimes en cause, ce qui autorise ainsi tout État concerné à demander au Bureau de le laisser enquêter sur ses ressortissants ou d’autres personnes relevant de sa compétence pour des crimes visés par le Statut de Rome dont il est question dans la notification (sous réserve d’un éventuel examen par la Chambre préliminaire).

      Toute enquête que le Bureau entreprendra en définitive sera menée en toute indépendance, impartialité et objectivité, sans crainte ni parti pris. Au vu du Statut de Rome, afin d’établir la vérité, le Bureau est tenu d’étendre l’enquête à tous les faits et éléments de preuve qui peuvent être utiles pour déterminer l’existence d’une responsabilité pénale au regard du Statut et, ce faisant, d’enquêter tant à charge qu’à décharge. (...)

    • Harris assures Netanyahu of US opposition to ICC probe
      March 5, 2021 – Middle East Monitor

      March 5, 2021 at 12:44 pm

      US Vice President Kamala Harris, in a call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday, reaffirmed Washington’s opposition to an International Criminal Court (ICC) probe of possible war crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories, Reuters reported the White House saying.

      The call, the first between the two since Harris and President Joe Biden took office in January, came a day after the ICC prosecutor said she would launch the probe, prompting swift rejections by the US and Israel.

      Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, who will be replaced by British prosecutor Karim Khan on 16 June, said in December 2019 that war crimes had been or were being committed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. She named both the Israeli army and armed Palestinian groups as possible perpetrators.

      Harris and Netanyahu noted their governments’ “opposition to the International Criminal Court’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel,” the White House said. (...)

  • L’Iran peut-être responsable de l’explosion sur un navire israélien, selon Israël
    Par Le Figaro avec AFP | 27 février 2021

    Le ministre israélien de la Défense Benny Gantz a estimé ce samedi que l’Iran pourrait être responsable de l’explosion qui a touché un navire israélien dans le golfe d’Oman.

    À lire aussi :Avec l’Iran en ligne de mire, Joe Biden imprime déjà sa marque au Moyen-Orient

    Le MV Helios Ray, un bateau israélien transportant des véhicules, effectuait le trajet entre Dammam, ville portuaire de l’est de l’Arabie saoudite, et Singapour, au moment de l’explosion jeudi au nord-ouest d’Oman, selon Dryad Global, une société spécialisée dans la sécurité maritime.

    « L’emplacement du bateau, relativement proche de l’Iran à ce moment, peut laisser penser qu’il s’agit des Iraniens mais c’est quelque chose qu’il faut continuer de vérifier », a déclaré Benny Gantz, interrogé sur la chaîne publique israélienne Kan. « C’est une première estimation qui prend en compte la proximité (avec le territoire iranien, ndlr) et le contexte, c’est ce que je pense ». (...)


    • la dépêche Reuters

      Explosion Reported on Car Carrier in Gulf of Oman – gCaptain

      M/V Helios Ray.
      Photo : MarineTraffic.com/Graham Flett

      A Bahamas-flagged ship, the MV HELIOS RAY, was hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) and a maritime security firm said on Friday.

      The cause of the explosion is not clear.

      Investigations are ongoing. Vessel and crew are safe,” the UKMTO’s advisory notice said, advising vessels in the area to exercise caution.

      The incident occurred at 2040 GMT, it said, but gave no details about a possible cause.

      Maritime security firm Dryad Global said the MV HELIOS RAY was a vehicle carrier owned by Helios Ray Ltd, an Israeli firm registered in the Isle of Man. The ship was en route to Singapore from Dammam in Saudi Arabia.

      A spokesman for Israel’s Transportation Ministry said it had no information about an Israeli vessel having been struck in the Gulf.

      A company with the name Helios Ray Ltd is incorporated in the Isle of Man. The ship was managed by Stamco Ship Management, Refinitiv ship tracking data showed. Stamco Ship Management declined to comment when contacted by phone by Reuters.

      Whilst details regarding the incident remain unclear it remains a realistic possibility that the event was the result of asymmetric activity by Iranian military,” Dryad said in a report on the incident.

      Refinitiv data shows the ship has set Dubai as its current destination.

      The U.S. Navy’s Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet said it was aware of the incident and monitoring the situation.

    • compagnie israélienne, domiciliée dans l’Île de Man, probablement armateur d’un seul navire, pratique usuelle de séparation des risques
      navire sous pavillon des Bahamas
      exploitant maritime : société grecque

      reste à savoir quel types de véhicule se trouvent à bord… peut-être exportation d’armes (véhicules blindés ou autres) ?

    • Israeli-owned vessel docked in Dubai after mysterious explosion | Conflict News | Al Jazeera

      Israeli-owned cargo ship Helios Ray, partially damaged by an explosion, is seen after it anchored in Dubai, UAE
      Ali Haider/EPA

      The hulking Israeli-owned MV Helios Ray sat at dry dock facilities at Dubai’s Port Rashid on Sunday. Although the crew was unharmed in the blast, the vessel sustained two holes on its port side and two on its starboard side just above the waterline, according to American defence officials.
      The Helios Ray discharged cars at various ports in the Gulf before making its way out of the Middle East towards Singapore. The blast hit as the ship was sailing from the Saudi port Dammam out of the Gulf of Oman, forcing it to turn to Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, for inspection.

      Iranian authorities have not publicly commented on the ship. The country’s hardline Kayhan daily, whose editor-in-chief was appointed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, alleged the Helios Ray was “possibly” on an “espionag_e” mission in the region, without offering any evidence to support the claim. The _Sunday report speculated the ship may have been “trapped in an ambush by a branch of resistance axis”, referring to Iranian proxies in the region.

      The cargo vessel was hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman while bound for Singapore
      Ali Haider/EPA

    • Israeli-owned ship in Dubai for assessment after explosion | Reuters

      An Israeli-owned ship hit by an explosion in the strategic Gulf of Oman waterway is seen after arrival at a port in Dubai, United Arab Emirates February 28, 2021.
      REUTERS/Abdel Hadi Ramahi

      An Israeli-owned ship hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman strategic waterway has arrived at a port in Dubai, where is it is due to be assessed in dry dock.

      The MV Helios Ray, a vehicle-carrier ship, was hit overnight between Thursday and Friday by a blast above the water line that a U.S. defence official said ripped holes in both sides of its hull.

      Israel’s defence minister on Saturday said that an initial assessment had found that Iran was responsible for the explosion. There was no immediate comment from Iranian officials.

      The blue and white ship is now berthed in Dubai’s Port Rashid, having sailed from its position off the coast of Omani capital Muscat, where the explosion occurred.

    • Examination of Israeli-owned ship indicates Gulf blast was caused by mines — TV | The Times of Israel

      The Israeli-owned cargo ship, Helios Ray, sits docked in port in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Feb. 28, 2021.
      AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili

      Israeli officials increasingly believe explosion on vessel was operation by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, unsourced report says

      An examination of damage to an Israeli-owned cargo ship currently docked in Dubai indicates an explosion that hit it in the Gulf of Oman was caused by mines covertly attached to the ship, according to a Sunday TV report.

      Channel 13 news did not cite sources for the report, which contradicted earlier reported assessments in Israel that that blast was caused by missiles. An Israeli team is believed to be in Dubai to examine the ship following the suspected attack. The ship is undergoing repairs in Dubai.

      Limpet mines are a type of naval explosive that attach to targets using magnets. The report speculated that the mines could have been attached to the ship’s hull during a stop at a port and later set off.

      The network said that Israel increasingly believes a naval force from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps was behind the attack. Channel 12 news raised the possibility that the explosion was the work of a commando team in a fast boat that attached explosives to the ship.

    • Nétanyahou menace l’Iran après l’attaque d’un navire de transport israélien en mer d’Oman

      Le premier ministre israélien, Benyamin Nétanyahou, a averti lundi 1er mars que son pays « frappera[it] » l’Iran « partout dans la région », après avoir accusé Téhéran d’être à l’origine d’une explosion à bord du cargo Helios-Ray, navire israélien qui bat pavillon des Bahamas.

      « Il est clair que c’est un acte iranien. Et pour ce qui est de ma riposte, vous connaissez ma politique. L’Iran est le plus grand ennemi d’Israël et je suis déterminé à l’arrêter et nous allons le frapper partout dans la région », a déclaré M. Nétanyahou lors d’une interview à la radio, après des frappes nocturnes attribuées à Israël contre des éléments pro-iraniens en Syrie voisine.

      « Plus important encore, l’Iran n’aura pas l’arme nucléaire, que ce soit dans le cadre d’un accord ou sans accord. C’est ce que j’ai dit à mon ami, le président [américain Joe] Biden », a ajouté le chef du gouvernement israélien, actuellement en campagne pour les législatives du 23 mars.

      « Nous rejetons fermement cette accusation », car « la source de cette accusation est elle-même la moins crédible qui soit, ce qui en montre l’invalidité », a déclaré le porte-parole du ministère des affaires étrangères iranen, Saïd Khatibzadeh, dans une conférence de presse à Téhéran.

  • „Face control” : Russian police go digital against protesters

    MOSCOW (Reuters) - Georgy Malets didn’t make it to an anti-Kremlin rally last month. He was detained on his way there by police using facial recognition technology in the Moscow metro. The 30-year-old Russian photo blogger said the police told him he had been identified by a “Face-ID” camera system and must accompany them to a police station for checks. “I could see they had some kind of photographs, but they weren’t from cameras - it was definitely a photograph from my profile on social (...)

    #algorithme #CCTV #activisme #biométrie #facial #reconnaissance #vidéo-surveillance #surveillance


  • Dutch officials report record catch of more than 23 tonnes of cocaine | Reuters

    Customs authorities in Germany and Belgium have seized a record haul of more than 23 tonnes of cocaine destined for the Netherlands in two raids this month, Dutch prosecutors said on Wednesday.

    The two shipments together represented a street value of roughly 600 million euros ($730 million), the prosecutors said, making it the biggest seizure of cocaine headed for the Netherlands.

    Prosecutors said a 28-year-old Dutchman had been arrested on Wednesday who was registered as the recipient of the containers in which the drugs were found.

    In Hamburg, Germany, 16.17 tonnes of cocaine were found in over 1,700 tins of wall filler which had arrived on a container ship from Paraguay.

    In the Belgian port of Antwerp around 7.2 tonnes of the drugs was found hidden in a container filled with wood blocks which had been shipped from Panama.

    Paraguay’s anti-drugs authority said later on Wednesday it carried out four simultaneous raids on premises allegedly linked to both the cocaine shipments discovered in Europe.

    We are finding evidence such as paint cans that are similar to those that were seized (in Europe),” Francisco Ayala, a spokesman for Paraguay’s National Anti-Drug Secretariat (SENAD) told reporters during one of the raids.

    Envases Paraguayos, the firm that owns the paint factory that was raided, denied involvement, saying in a statement that the company was a victim of organized crime gangs who had tampered with the shipment.

    Paraguay is a popular transit country for cocaine trafficking from Andean countries to Europe, according to the United Nations.

    However, its interior minister Arnaldo Giuzzio on Wednesday said “Although the containers depart from our country, the cargo can also be contaminated (with drugs) in other ports.”

  • Mekong River at ’worrying’ low level amid calls for more Chinese dam data | Reuters

    Water levels in the Mekong River have fallen to a “worrying level” in part due to outflow restrictions from Chinese hydropower dams upstream, the Mekong River Commission (MRC) said on Friday, calling on Beijing to share all of its water data.

    #eau #barrage #réservoirs #Mékong

  • Nord Stream 2 says preparations for construction in Danish waters can go ahead | Reuters

    FILE PHOTO: The Russian pipe-laying ship “Fortuna” is seen in the Mecklenburg Bay ahead of the resumption of Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline construction near Insel Poel, Germany January 14, 2021.
    REUTERS/Annegret Hilse_

    The Russia-led Nord Stream 2 (NS2) consortium on Friday said preparatory work to complete the subsea gas pipeline to Germany in Danish waters can go ahead, pointing to the latest notifications by the Danish Maritime Authority.

    Denmark’s Nautiskinformation notified shippers on Thursday that prohibited areas near Bornholm would be established beginning on Friday for the pipe laying vessel Fortuna, assisted by construction and supply vessels.

    Earlier, the German business daily Handelsblatt said the NS2 group, which is led by Russia’s Gazprom, was delaying the completion work, linking this to enhanced sanctions pressure from Washington aimed at halting the project.

    A spokesman for the Switzerland-based group, who had referenced the Danish website, said he would not comment any further.

    The consortium will probably be able to say at the end of January or in early February when work will resume, the Handelsblatt report had quoted the group as saying.

    More than 90% of the project has been completed.

    According to Refinitiv Eikon ship tracking data, the Fortuna was anchored near the German port of Rostock on Friday.

    Construction of Nord Stream 2 was initially halted in December 2019 following the sanctions threat from the United States, which wants to cut Europe’s dependence on Russian energy and sell its own liquefied natural gas to the region.

  • Google told its scientists to ’strike a positive tone’ in AI research - documents

    OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) - Alphabet Inc’s Google this year moved to tighten control over its scientists’ papers by launching a “sensitive topics” review, and in at least three cases requested authors refrain from casting its technology in a negative light, according to internal communications and interviews with researchers involved in the work. Google’s new review procedure asks that researchers consult with legal, policy and public relations teams before pursuing topics such as face and (...)

    #Google #Gmail #YouTube #algorithme #biométrie #géolocalisation #manipulation #religion #COVID-19 #discrimination (...)


  • Apple supplier Wistron puts India plant damage at up to $7 million

    TAIPEI (Reuters) - The ransacking of an iPhone manufacturing facility in India caused up to T$200 million ($7.12 million) in damage though production facilities were not as badly hit as reported, its Taiwan-based operator Wistron Corp said on Tuesday. Thousands of contract workers gathered on the grounds of the Wistron site on the outskirts of India’s tech hub of Bengaluru on Saturday demanding unpaid wages and better working hours. As police arrived, the crowd turned violent and video (...)

    #Apple #Wistron #iPhone #smartphone #violence #lutte #travail


    • the company said major production facilities and warehouses had not suffered as serious damage as reported by local media, and that it was initially estimating losses at T$100-200 million.

      Ce ne sont donc pas essentiellement les machines qui ont été touchées

      Apple Inc said on Monday it was investigating whether Wistron had flouted supplier guidelines. Apple said it was sending staff and auditors to the site and was cooperating with police in their investigation. Wistron is one of Apple’s top global suppliers.

      Il n’existe pas, par ailleurs, une campagne internationale contre les pratiques de sous-traitance d’Apple ? J’ai l’impression d’avoir déjà entendu parler d’une telle initiative.

  • Explosives-laden boat hits fuel ship at Saudi port, ministry says | Reuters

    Oil tanker BW Rhine is seen in the Straits of Singapore in this handout photo taken in 2018.
    Hafnia/Handout via REUTERS TV

    Saudi Arabia said on Monday that a fuel transport ship anchored at a Jeddah terminal was hit by an explosive-laden boat in what it called a terrorist attack, after shipping firm Hafnia said one of its tankers was struck by an “external source”.

    A Saudi energy ministry spokesman, in a statement carried on state media, did not mention the name of the vessel or identify who was behind the attack.

    Hafnia said there was an explosion and a fire while its oil tanker, the BW Rhine, was discharging at Jeddah port. The ship’s crew put out the fire and no-one was injured, it said, adding that parts of the ship’s hull had been damaged.

    Al Arabiya TV cited the captain of the BW Rhine as saying that small boats had been spotted ahead of the explosion, and that one of the vessel’s tanks was damaged in the blast.

    BW Rhine has been hit from an external source whilst discharging at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at approximately 00:40 local time on 14 December 2020, causing an explosion and subsequent fire onboard,” Hafnia said in a statement on its website.

  • Giant iceberg on course to collide with south Atlantic penguin colony island | Reuters
    (150 km de long, portfolio de 5 images, par avion et satellite)


    °A satellite image of the A-68A iceberg (L) as it approaches South Georgia island (R) in the South Atlantic, December 4, 2020.
    Copernicus Sentinel-Pierre Markuse/Handout via REUTERS °

    An enormous iceberg is heading toward South Georgia Island in the southern Atlantic, where scientists say a collision could devastate wildlife by threatening the food chain.

    Scientists have long been watching this climate-related event unfold, as the iceberg - about the same size as the island itself – has meandered and advanced over two years since breaking off from the Antarctic peninsula in July 2017.

    The peninsula is one of the fastest-warming places on Earth, registering a record high temperature of 20.75 degrees Celsius (69.35 degrees Fahrenheit) on Feb. 9. The warming has scientists concerned about ice melt and collapse leading to higher sea levels worldwide.

    The gigantic iceberg - dubbed A68a - is on a path to collide with South Georgia Island, a remote British overseas territory off the southern tip of South America. Whether that collision is days or weeks away is unclear, as the iceberg has sped up and slowed down with the ocean currents along the way, said Geraint Tarling, a biological oceanographer with the British Antarctic Survey who has been tracking the icy mass.

    A collision, while looking increasingly likely, could still be avoided if the currents carry the iceberg past the island, Tarling said.

    The currents “still have the power to take this iceberg in one direction or another away from South Georgia,” Tarling said in an interview on Wednesday. “But it is really, really close, less than 50 kilometers away from the south shelf edge. That’s getting so close that it’s almost inevitable.

    Images captured by a British Royal Air Force aircraft and released on Tuesday show the magnitude of the monstrous, 4,200-square-km (1,620-square-mile) iceberg, its surface carved with tunnels, cracks and fissures. A number of smaller ice chunks can be seen floating nearby.

    The sheer size of the A68a iceberg means it is impossible to capture its entirety in one single shot,” British officials said in a statement.

    Still, the berg is diminished from its original size of 5,800 square km (2,240 square miles), measured when the mass broke off from Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf 2-1/2 years ago.

  • Google et Amazon sanctionnés pour non respect de la législation sur les cookies​

    PARIS (Reuters) - La Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL) a infligé des amendes de 100 millions d’euros à Google et de 35 millions d’euros à Amazon pour des infractions à la législation française sur les cookies, annonce-t-elle jeudi dans un communiqué. “La formation restreinte, organe de la CNIL chargé de prononcer les sanctions, a constaté, à la suite de contrôles, que lorsqu’un internaute se rendait sur les sites web google.fr et amazon.fr, des cookies publicitaires étaient (...)

    #Google #Facebook #cookies #consentement #profiling #CNIL


  • U.S. cybersecurity firm FireEye discloses breach, theft of hacking tools

    FireEye, one of the largest cybersecurity companies in the United States, said on Tuesday that it had been hacked, likely by a government, and that an arsenal of hacking tools used to test the defenses of its clients had been stolen. The hack of FireEye, a company with an array of contracts across the national security space both in the United States and its allies, is among the most significant breaches in recent memory. The company’s shares dropped 8% in after-hours trading. The FireEye (...)

    #spyware #hacking