All “Arctic 30” Greenpeace detainees pardoned
ST. PETERSBURG, December 26 (RAPSI) – The case against Cristian d'Alessandro, one of the 30 Greenpeace activists detained in September over a protest staged at a Russian drilling rig in the Arctic, has been dropped, RIA Novosti reported Thursday citing Greenpeace Russia press-secretary Maria Favorskaya.
D'Alessandro has become the last member of the Arctic Sunrise vessel who was pardoned pursuant to a broad amnesty spearheaded by Russian President Vladimir Putin in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Constitution of the Russian Federation.
The Arctic Sunrise ship was seized by Russian border guards on September 19 in international waters, within Russia's exclusive economic zone, a day after Greenpeace activists scaled the Prirazlomnaya drilling rig in the Pechora Sea, the southeastern part of the Barents Sea. 30 people were on board the vessel. All of them were detained and charged with piracy. Later the [piracy charges were replaced with hooliganism charges. In November all those who had been detained were released on bail.
The platform, owned by Gazprom Neft Shelf, a subsidiary of Russian energy giant Gazprom, is the first ice-resistant stationary oil platform in the world set to produce offshore Arctic oil.
Greenpeace lawyer Mikhail Kreindlin told RIA Novosti that the vessel itself should be released once all criminal cases have been closed. He added, however, that the vessel will likely to remain under Russian custody until the end of the holiday season, which in Russia will continue through January 8, 2014.