Mauritian government seeks compensation from Japanese company for devastating oil spill

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The idyllic island of Mauritius faces ecological disaster after an oil spill from a Japanese vessel. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)
The idyllic island of Mauritius faces ecological disaster after an oil spill from a Japanese vessel. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

It’s just a four-hour flight from Johannesburg and has long been a sought-after destination for holidaymakers who want to bathe in its aquamarine waters, bask on the silver sands and marvel at the abundant marine life.

But those waters are now stained black, the unspoilt beaches are streaked with oil and sea creatures from once-pristine reefs are washing up dead.

Mauritius is an island in crisis, facing an ecological disaster of unprecedented proportions after a tanker ran aground on a coral reef. And for a nation already reeling from a catastrophic decline in tourism because of the coronavirus, it could drive the country into the ground.

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