Ghana holds Argentine frigate over debt

2012-10-03 22:21
The Argentine tall ship Libertad. (File)

The Argentine tall ship Libertad. (File)

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Buenos Aires - Argentina on Wednesday alleged Ghana was violating international law by holding one of its frigates after a court order sought by creditors in the African nation suing Buenos Aires over its 2002 bond default.

Ghana's seizure of the (training) ship Libertad "is against the Vienna Convention on diplomatic immunity," an Argentine foreign ministry statement said, alleging the lawsuit by NML Capital was fradulent.

"The foreign ministry has already taken steps to clarify to the African nation's government the fraud these financiers have perpetrated," the statement said.

The director general of Ghana's ports authority confirmed the Libertad had been held in line with a court order.

"I can confirm that the ship has been detained in Ghana on the order of the court," Richard AY Anamoo told AFP.

"It is not Ghanaian authorities that have taken a decision to arrest or detain the ship, but rather it was a court order which needed to be complied with ... The owners of the ship would have to pay the money or appear in court to defend their case."

Between 2005 and 2010 Argentina refinanced and rescheduled with creditors repayment of 93% of the almost $100bn default it incurred in 2001. Among the unsettled business were bonds held by speculative funds seeking to recoup their money through the courts.

Argentina also has more than $6.5bn in debt with the Paris Club of government creditors.

Read more on:    argentina  |  ghana  |  west africa  |  maritime

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