An almost sensational news came in the morning: an ex-Ukrainian ship is used to bring cargo to Syria (‘Russian provides weapons to Syria using a cargo ship bought from Ukraine in 2015‘).
In one of its reports SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute) mentioned about an ex-Ukrainian cargo ship ‘Ivan Agafonov’, which is currently used to move freights to Syria.
An experienced reader could immediately smell #Zrada [#Betrayal]. It is impossible to sell a ship during a war, it will be used to kill innocent Syrians, etc. But let’s analyze the situation.
First of all, this is not a news. Back in December InformNapalm volunteers published an article ‘War in Syria: Russia Paved Its Way to the Ground Operation Through the Sea’, which covered the entire story of this ship:
“There are rumors that ‘Georgiy Agafonov’ cargo ship was sold by the Ukrainian Danube company to Turkey for scrap-metal; used to sail under Mongolia’s flag; then was bought by Russia for its Black Sea fleet for 0.8-1.5 million dollars.”
The article contained infographics where the very same ship was indicated as an ex-civil ship.
Swedish colleagues assumed that the ship was sold to a Mongolian company but in reality only a port of registry was changed. A landlocked Mongolia offers many attractive financial benefits and keep a lot of ships from many countries: it is just convenient to use Mongolian flag.
Ukrainian Danube Company (UDC) sold this ship at the end of 2014 to the Turkish company 2 E DENIZCILIK SAN. VE TIC.A.S for around 300 thousand euros. Soon after it was towed for scrap metal to Turkey. Later new owners sold it to Russians.
Director of the UDC talked about this deal with Odessa’s ‘Dumskaya‘ newspaper:
“When we sold ‘Agafonov’ it was not in working order and new owners had to spend money to fix its engine. We are talking about something like 500 thousand dollars. But the most important fact is its general condition: it was rotten and a lot of things could not be repaid. I’m afraid that this ‘Kazan’ will not be able to reach Syria – will sink together with tanks, rockets or whatever they deliver.”
It is a different story to understand who is behind the Turkish company. What is the price paid by the Russian military forces to the Turks? And what does it cost to the Russian state budget? These are the really important topics if you are the Russian journalists!
P. S. We would like to stress that the Ukrainian media first did not notice an article in ‘Dumska’ newspaper and then did not pay attention to a detailed investigation of the Russia’s military shipments to Syria prepared by InformNapalm – we call it Stockholm Syndrome of the Ukraine’s #Betrayal.