23 September 2023
Estonian-owned general cargo vessel Helt unfortunately sunk in the Black Sea off the coast of Ukraine following an explosion, according to the Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority reported.
All six crewmembers have managed to abandon the ship and Ukrainian officials confirmed that they successfully rescued them later.
Note that, the Panama-flagged ship has probably hit a mine about 20 nautical miles off Odessa.
“The ship received a hole below the waterline,”Port Authorities
Nonetheless, he 2,100DWT HELT was a hostage of the Russian Navy yesterday in an effort to;
“use it as a shield in order to hide behind it from the Ukrainian anti-ship weapons.”State Border Guard Service of Ukraine
The news comes just a day after the Bangladeshi-owned bulker Banglar Samriddhi took a missile in Ukrainian waters, killing one of its crew members. The ship remains stranded at Olvia port in the Black Sea since Russia invaded Ukraine nine days ago.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), whose membership includes Estonia, had previously warned shipping of the risk of mines in the Black Sea.
“A large number of navigation warnings have been issued, covering a number of warning areas, including mine danger areas. Shipping is encouraged to stay well informed about these and keep well clear of the areas as well as warships and military crafts,”NATO