Marine Wildlife at Vema Seamount. © Richard Barnden / Greenpeace
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Prof. Victor Axiak
Chairperson
Environment & Resources Authority of Malta
Republic of Malta

Ms. Carmen Buttigieg
Deputy Chairperson
Environment & Resources Authority of Malta
Republic of Malta

Cc Hon. Evarist Bartolo
Minister for European & Foreign Affairs
Republic of Malta

Cc Hon. Aaron Farrugia
Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Planning 
Republic of Malta

Cc Hon. Kavydass Ramano
Minister of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change
Republic of Mauritius

Cc Hon. Sudheer Maudhoo
Minister of Blue Economy, Marine Resources, Fisheries and Shipping
Republic of Mauritius 

Cc. Hon. Shinjiro Koizumi 
Minister of the Environment, 
Japan

Cc Mr. Fredrik Haag
Head of Office for London Convention/Protocol & Ocean Affairs, Marine Environment Division,
International Maritime Organisation
London, United Kingdom

Cc Mr. Dixon. G. Waruinge
Coordinator, Nairobi Convention Secretariat
United Nations Environment Programme
Nairobi, Kenya

Cc. Ms. Magali de Torrijos
President & CEO
Panama Maritime Authority
Republic of Panama

Johannesburg, 14 September 2020

Dear Professor Axiak and Ms Buttigieg, 

Following the grounding of the MV Wakashio off the coast of Malta and the subsequent dumping of the forward cargo section of the ship 35 miles off the coast of Mauritius, on August 24 2020 we wrote to you, as the Flag State responsible for the tugs that undertook the dumping.  You have not yet replied to our letter which raised serious questions about this operation, specifically:

  1. Was the Government of Malta consulted on the planned towing and sinking of the MV Wakashio wreck? 
  2. Did you approve the operation and the participation of Maltese vessels?
  3. If approval was given, was a (special) permit issued ahead of time, permitting the Maltese vessels to participate in this operation? 
    • If a permit was issued, what steps were taken ahead of the issuance of the permit, to comply with the London Convention 1972?
    • If no permit was issued, on what grounds was a permit considered unnecessary?
  4. If no approval was given, what action will the Government of Malta take to give effect to its duty under Article VII.2 of the London Convention 1972 to “prevent and punish conduct in contravention of the provisions of this Convention”?

In addition, we request that you clarify when the Republic of Malta intends to make a formal report on the dumping of the vessel to the Office for the London Convention, as is required.

The MV Wakashio was towed to its planned sinking place by several ships – among them two Maltese-flagged vessels, the Boka Summit and the Boka Expedition. As a party to the London Convention (1972), the Republic of Malta is required to prohibit and prevent its vessels from dumping waste including vessels at sea, except under the limited conditions recognised in the Convention.

A copy of our original letter is attached. We would appreciate a response from you by 18 September 2020.

Greenpeace Africa Interim Executive Director
 Lagi Toribau
DIS MOI Chairperson
Roshan Rajroop
Greenpeace Japan Executive Director
Sam Annesley