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The impounded armament in Finland yesterday were legal shipment to South Korea

Thursday, 22 December 2011
The seized Patriot missiles in Finland were perfectly legal exported products from Germany to South Korea, according to German authorities.

Outside the Finnish Utö, the vessel was much in trouble in rough weather and the pilot had to ask for help.

German officials have confirmed that the 69 Patriot missiles impounded in Kotka Harbour were loaded in the northern German port of Emden. They are part of an official German government consignment en route to South Korea.

German Defence Ministry officials added customs documentation was in accordance with local regulations.

A Finnish pilot vessel intercepted the Manx flagged M/S Thor Liberty on December, 9 following a request for assistance during heavy seas.

Wednesday's seizure by Finnish Customs officials of a cargo of explosives and high-tech missiles aboard a Manx-flagged ship has aroused a number of questions. It is being asked why such a valuable cargo was poorly packed and shipped with faulty documents. The Finnish Defence Forces will move the impounded missiles to a safe but so far unknown location.

Their journey was interrupted when a spot check of the cargo aboard the M/S Thor Liberty showed that the shipment lacked a permit from the Ministry of Defence that is required for the export or transit of military material.

Customs and police turned their attention to the vessel after being informed by the Finnish Transport Safety Agency (TraFi) that it had received advance information that it was possibly carrying explosives.

Arms shipments transit Finnish territorial waters regularly, but few ships with such cargoes sail without the proper documentation according to reports.

The transport of explosives back and forth across the Gulf of Finland has raised safety concerns. Emergency Services in Kotka set up a one-kilometre restricted zone around the vessel while its cargo was being handled by officials. Even so, the ship had already carried 150 tonnes of improperly secured explosives across the Gulf of Finland without informing anyone according Finnish media reports.
By Scancomark.se Team


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