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The Government of Israel is offering to send five experts to the Rennell Islands in the Solomon Islands who are trained to respond to pollution at sea and shore.
A bauxite loading ship, the Hong Kong flagged, MV Solomon Trader which grounded on a reef has been leaking oil into the ocean for over a month and is threatening the home of the world’s largest raised coral atoll and a UNESCO World Heritage site, in the Kangava Bay.
The ecological delicate area has seen escalating damage and contamination to the food chain of surrounding communities and killing sea life.
In expressing his sadness to the destruction of the UNESCO protected atoll, Israel’s Ambassador to the Pacific, Tibor Schlosser, said his Government is offering five International Maritime Organisation (IMO) certified experts from the Ministry of Marine Environment Protection to help contain further destruction and the oil spill.
“Our thoughts are with the communities and the beautiful people of the Solomon Islands who have been left without sources of sustenance following the destruction of their fishing grounds,” he said.
Ambassador Tibor said Israel has a high regard for the environment, and given the unique relationship the Pacific people have with the ocean “our friendship calls for assistance to our friends in need for this rehabilitation process.”
Reports suggest the damage is estimated to be over US$50million and there could be a possible breach of the international safety management code.
Solomon Islands caretaker Prime Minister, Rick Hou has confirmed that a review of environmental and mining laws is needed, to deal with an emergency as such.
SOURCE: ISRAEL GOVT/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
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