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Shipping industry call for help to evacuate the 300+ seafarers still trapped in Ukraine Ports

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LONDON : As we approach one year since the start of the war in Ukraine, the co-signatories of this letter write to you to highlight the 331 seafarers still trapped on vessels in the Black Sea and Sea of Azov. We call on the United Nations, and on your diplomatic influence, to address this matter urgently and evacuate all remaining seafarers and ships.

Our seafarers are the heart of our industry and cannot be forgotten. For 12 months now they have been caught up in a crisis far beyond their control. Simply doing their jobs cannot come at the expense of their lives.

We recognise and celebrate the United Nations, and your leadership, for the Black Sea Grain Initiative that the UN successfully brokered with Türkiye between Ukraine and Russia. This has allowed the safe passage of critical grain and fertiliser shipments from Ukraine to populations most in need, and curbed food prices from spiralling out of control.

We are committed to supporting the continued success of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, however this cannot come at the expense of innocent seafarers’ lives. Action must be taken now.

Without our seafarers, movement of the vital grain shipments out of Ukrainian ports would not have been possible. While there are challenges to evacuating seafarers and their ships, it must nonetheless be a top priority. Otherwise, we risk the lives of our seafarers, and this is unacceptable.

Please kindly see below the full list of signatories to the letter.

Bahamas Shipowners Association,
John Adams, BSA Chairman

David Loosley, Secretary General & CEO

Mario Mattioli, President of
Italian Shipowners’ Association

CYPRUS SHIPPING CHAMBER, Thomas A. Kazakos, Director General

Daiichi Chuo Kisen Kaisha, Masaharu Kurosawa, Representative Director, President Executive Officer

Sotiris Raptis, Secretary General

Jonathan C. Williams Fics, General Manager

IFSMA – International Federation of Shipmasters’ Associations, Jim Scorer, Secretary General

Hiromi Tosha, President and Representative Director,

Dr. Kostas G. GKONIS, CEO

InterManager, Capt. Kuba Szymanski, Secretary General

International Chamber of Shipping, Emanuele Grimaldi, Chairman of the Board and Managing Director
of the Grimaldi Group

International Christian Maritime Association (ICMA),
Jason Zuidema, Executive Director

International Maritime Employers’ Council Ltd. (IMEC),
Francesco Gargiulo, Chief Executive Officer

International Maritime Health Association (IMHA),
Dr. Robert Verbist, President

INTERTANKO, Dr. Phillip Belcher, Marine Director

Mike Beviss,
General Manager

IUMI – International Union of Marine Insurance, Lars Lange, Secretary General
Japanese Shipowners’ Association, Junichiro Ikeda, President

Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (“K” LINE), Yukikazu Myochin, Representative Director, President
and Chief Executive Officer

Mission to Seafarers,
Andrew Wright, Secretary General

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd., Takeshi Hashimoto, Representative Director, President, Chief Executive

Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK Line), Hitoshi Nagasawa, President, Representative Director,
President and Chief Executive Officer

Sailors’ Society, Sara Baade, CEO

Seafarers Hospital Society, Sandra Welch, CEO

Seafarers’ Charity, Deborah Layde, Chief Executive

Stella Maris,
Martin Foley, Chief Executive Officer/European Regional Coordinator

Synergy Denmark A/S,
Tommy Thomassen, COO

UK Chamber of Shipping,
Sarah Treseder, CEO

Union of Greek Shipowners, Melina Travlos, President

VDR – Verband Deutscher Reeder,
Dr. Gaby Bornheim, President & Dr. Martin Kröger, CEO

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