Estonia launches toxic tanker Probo Koala investigation: Greenpeace ends blockade as Estonian attorney general detains toxic ship

Press release - 27 September, 2006
Greenpeace today announced the end of its three day blockade of the Probo Koala and welcomed the decision by the Estonian Attorney General to launch an investigation into the toxic tanker.

"This is good news for the people of the Ivory Coast and for the environment" said Helen Perivier of Greenpeace International. "The Probo Kola is an international toxic crime scene and needs to be fully investigated to establish the full chain of culpability which led to the tragic deadly events in the Ivory Coast.

"Greenpeace is pleased that the Estonian Authorities are now taking action and believes that this will spark a full international inquiry into all of the companies and regulatory agencies which failed to stop the dumping of deadly toxic waste in the Ivory Coast. Only through such an investigation can the guilty be brought to justice and the lessons learned in order to prevent this from happening again."

On the basis of preliminary results it would appear that contamination found on the Probo Koala by the Estonian Environment Ministry is similar to that which poisoned the Ivory Coast. Greenpeace considers it imperative that Estonia agrees to the request of the Ivory Coast to continue to detain the Probo Koala as part of the ongoing Ivorian criminal investigation.

The international environmental organisation was shocked that after killing eight people on the Ivory Coast and contaminating many thousands more that this ship had been allowed to sail freely.

The Greenpeace MY Arctic Sunrise, which took up position in Paldiski on Monday to prevent the imminent departure of the Probo Koala -- branding it an "EU Toxic Crime Scene" -- will now return to the Baltic to continue its work against over fishing and for the establishment of marine reserves.

Other contacts: Jacob Hartmann, Greenpeace Toxic Campaigner, in Estonia, (m)+4528109020 Yannick Vicaire, Greenpeace Toxic Campaigner, in Estonia, (m) +33608755015 Helen Perivier, Greenpeace International Toxic Campaign, (m)+32496127107 Mike Townsley, Greenpeace Internationanl Communications, +31621296918

VVPR info: Greenpeace International Photo Desk +31653819255 Greenpeace International Video Desk +31646166309

Exp. contact date: 2006-10-05 00:00:00