Quick action by British authorities reportedly halted a shipment of Russian arms to Syria, including missiles and attack helicopters.
A Russian ships insurance was canceled as it steamed to Syria on grounds that it carried weapons that could be used against the Syrian people, a violation of European Union policy.
The insurer, Standard Steamship Owners Protection and Indemnity Association (Europe) Ltd., told the ship owner that their insurance cover ceased automatically in view of the nature of the voyage.
The ship, the MV Alaed, is owned by Femco, a shipping firm based on the Far East island of Sakhalin. Without insurance coverage, a vessel cannot load or unload cargo.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague said the boat, that was in the Norwegian Sea north of Scotland, reversed course after losing its insurance. I am pleased to report that the ship that was reportedly carrying arms to Syria has now turned back, apparently to Russia, Mr. Hague told Parliament Tuesday in London.