Murmansk/Moscow, 7 October, 2013 – Greenpeace International has revealed today that it intends to file a criminal complaint with the police over the illegal seizure of its ship the Arctic Sunrise.
"Serious violations took place when the FSB detained the crew and the icebreaker Arctic Sunrise," said Alexander Mukhortov, the lawyer representing Peter Willcox, the US captain of theArctic Sunrise.
"Armed men without identification boarded the vessel while wearing masks and pointing guns at those on board. They then took control of the vessel, confiscated personal belongings and put everyone in custody without documenting any of these actions."
At a press conference held in Moscow today, Greenpeace International also said it is filing complaints over the violations of the rights of the 30 detainees.
"In some cells it is cold and there are video cameras around the clock. Not all of those detained have access to sufficient drinking water or are able to exercise adequately," Greenpeace International lawyer Sergei Golubok said.
Greenpeace International lawyers have also objected to the transportation of activists in police wagons. Some of those detained have been transported for 4-5 hours each way to the Murmansk court hearings in cages without food, heating or access to toilet.
In other developments, Greenpeace International can confirm that appeals hearings against the continued detention of the 28 activists, plus a freelancer videographer and photographer, will start on Tuesday.
The hearings of three Russian prisoners will take place on Tuesday from 9:30 local time. Greenpeace International has also been informed the remaining 27 hearings will take place betweenWednesday and Saturday this week.
A video from the interrogation of Captain Peter Willcox by the Investigative Committee on the Arctic Sunrise on Friday September 28 has now been released. It can be viewed here. Download details below.
At today's press conference, Greenpeace International also presented worrying facts about the way in which the Arctic Sunrise is being held. The Chief Engineer on the Arctic Sunrise, Mannes Ubels, was on Friday allowed to visit the ship, where is it currently being held by the Russian Federal Security Agency FSB in a military harbor outside of Murmansk. Ubels later sent a letter to the FSB raising concerns about the ship's maintenance:
"Soon, if not already the generator, generating the ships electricity, will stop running. With this, also all the ships main functions will stop working, apart from the secondary system. The ship will no longer have a alarm system and common leakages of sea water into the engine room will no longer raise alarms," Ubels wrote to the head of the Investigative Committee. "I respectfully ask you to consider to allow me to take care of the ship to avoid greater damage or worst case sinking of our ship." The letter can be viewed here.