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ASF adds support for Piracy petition

ASF adds support for Piracy petition

Hong Kong: Four new organisations have announced their support for, the global e-petition that demands concrete action to end piracy. The ASF (Asian Shipowners' Forum), ECSA (European Community Shipowners' Associations), the ICMA (International Christian Maritime Association) and ICSW (International Committee for Seafarers' Welfare), are now also promoting the initiative to their members and beyond.

So far over 53,000 people have signed the petition, which will be used to put pressure on national governments to tackle piracy, and which is intended to attract half a million signatures by IMO World Maritime Day, September 23rd.

The petition is a joint campaign by BIMCO, ICS, IFSMA, IMEC, IPTA, Intercargo, InterManager, International Group of P&I Clubs, INTERTANKO, ISF, ITF, IUMI and SIGTTO as well as national shipowners' associations and trade unions worldwide

The text of the petition is:

"Enough is enough! Governments must act now to fight piracy

Almost every day seafarers are being kidnapped and exposed to an increasing risk of injury or even death
Every day seafarers transport the world's goods through areas where the risk of pirate attack is increasing

Every day seafarers' families are suffering worry and uncertainty

Every day the chances of attracting people to jobs at sea - on which all our economies rely - are shrinking
Every day shipping companies and their insurers have to pay for increasing anti-piracy measures, extra fuel and ransoms - costs that are eventually passed on to the consumer

Every day the risk of a major ecological disaster due to an oil spill caused by piracy increases

Every day the chances of a recovery in the world economy are being jeopardised by this threat to world trade

We, the undersigned, urgently call on Governments to do everything possible to protect the thousands of seafarers and the hundreds of ships at risk of attack by pirates by:

o dedicating significant resources and concerted efforts to find real solutions to the growing piracy problem;

o taking immediate steps to secure the release and safe return of kidnapped seafarers to their families;

o working within the international community to secure a stable and peaceful future for Somalia and its people." [24/06/10]