26 Greenpeace activists charged with hooliganism in total
MOSCOW, October 31 (RAPSI) - 26 Greenpeace activists detained in Murmansk over the Gazprom drilling platform raid in the Pechora Sea have been charged with hooliganism, environmental law expert for Greenpeace Russia Mikhail Kreindlin told RIA Novosti on Thursday.
"9 more [activists] were charged with hooliganism," Kreindlin said. Charges were brought against Roman Dolgov (Russia), Sini Saarela (Finland), Paul Ruzycki (Canada), Jon Beauchamp and David John Haussmann (New Zealand), Christian D'Alessandro (Italy), Tomasz Dziemianczuk (Poland), Mannes Ubels (the Netherlands) and Marco Weber (Switzerland).
Earlier, investigators brought hooliganism charges against photographer Denis Sinyakov, ship's doctor Yekaterina Zaspa, Greenpeace's press office chief Andrei Allakhverdov, Arctic Sunrise captain Peter Wilcox, sea cook Ruslan Yakushev, activists Phillip Ball, John Bryan, Frank Hewetson, Iain Rogers, Frank Hewetson, Anthony Perrett and Alexandra Harris (UK), David Hossman (New Zealand), Colin Russell (Australia), Gizem Akhan (Turkey), Dmitry Litvinov (Sweden, US), Miguel Hernan Perez Orzi and Camila Speziale (Argentina).
According to Kreindlin, piracy charges against activists have not been dropped yet.
The Arctic Sunrise ship was seized by Russian border guards on September 19 in international waters, within Russia's exclusive economic zone, a day after two Greenpeace activists scaled the Prirazlomnaya drilling rig in the Pechora Sea, the southeastern part of the Barents Sea. 30 people were on board the vessel. All of them were detained.
On October 9, investigators found drugs aboard the ship.
The platform, owned by Gazprom Neft Shelf, a subsidiary of Russian energy giant Gazprom, is the first ice-resistant stationary oil platform in the world set to produce offshore Arctic oil.
Greenpeace and other environmental groups oppose drilling for oil in the Arctic because they say that it is currently impossible to sufficiently clean up potential oil spills in the region, and that such drilling cannot be economically viable.