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Sri Lanka allows fire-stricken New Diamond to leave its waters

Sri Lanka allows fire-stricken New Diamond to leave its waters

After some last-minute talks on compensation, Sri Lanka gave permission for the fire-stricken tanker to leave its waters.

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A Sri Lanka Navy spokesman told local media that the Navy has two vessels tracking the New Diamond until it is beyond the 200-mile exclusive economic zone of the region.

The rescue team is thought to be planning on towing the tanker to the United Arab Emirates now. At the time of the blast, the Indian Oil Company, which had chartered the tanker, announced that the vessel was going to the port of Khor Fakkan in the UAE.

Pending guarantees from the ship's owners that they were paying the claims Sri Lanka filed, permission for the tanker to leave Sri Lanka was withheld.

For its fire protection efforts and the environmental harm caused by the leak of the ship's diesel fuel tank, the Sri Lankan authorities filed a claim worth nearly $ 2 million. At the time, Sri Lanka said it was a preliminary argument for expenses until mid-September.

It is reported that the Greek shipping company Porto Emporios Shipping, the registered owner of New Diamond, has agreed to a settlement paid by the insurers of the vessel.

The captain of the New Diamond also made an appearance at the magistrate's court in Sri Lanka earlier this week, where they are seeking to put him up on charges of causing oil pollution and failing to fight the fire properly. 

The magistrate decided to forbid the captain from travelling, but declined demands to remand him. The case is set to be heard in court on 12 October.

The New Diamond fire was extinguished on 9 September after a nearly week-long joint action by the Indian and Sri Lankan Navy and Coast Guards with the assistance of the Sri Lankan Air Force. The salvage job was given to Smit.

Maritime Business World 

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