New dirty shipment expected from Bilbao

For the second time in two weeks, windmill products might be exported from Bilbao to occupied Western Sahara.

08 August 2021

The photo above shows Johannes picking up cargo in Bilbao in July. Next week, a similar incident might happen again. 

Yet again, the cargo vessel Johannes is returning to port of Bilbao, Spain, most likely to pick up elements for Siemens Gamesa's construction of a controversial windfarm in occupied Western Sahara. The ship is expected to arrive at the Basque city on the morning of 11 August 2021. 

Read here why Morocco's renewable energy projects on occupied land are controversial. 

Western Sahara Resource Watch (WSRW) already revealed the first cargo made by the same ship from Bilbao to El Aaiún, Western Sahara, on 21 July 2021. The hold of the ship was at the time full of key elements for the windmills. As WSRW expected, during that incident Johannes made a stopover in Tangiers, where it picked up blades, before continuing to El Aaiún, where it arrived on 4 August. On 5 August, it returned for Bilbao. 

In total, WSRW has now documented at least seven shipments of windmill components arriving in the occupied territory since the end of June 2021. 

  • Johannes transporting equipments from Motril, Spain, arriving El Aaiún on 29 June, discharging, leaving back for Motril on 2 July.
  • Breb Countess coming from Iskenderun, Turkey, arriving Dakhla on 5 July, discharging, left on 9 July for Dakhla anchorage. On 4 August 2021, Breb Countess returned to Dakhla dock from anchorage, for a two-days stay at port. On 6 August, the vessel returned to anchorage.
  • Johannes departing from Motril, Spain, arriving at El Aaiún 10 July, discharging, left 13 July for Bilbao, arrival 18 July.
  • Aramis departing from Motril, Spain, arriving at El Aaiún on 13 July, discharging, left 15 July for Motril, arrival 18 July.
  • Johannes departing from Bilbao, Spain, on 21 July, before picking up blades in Tangiers, arriving in El Aaiún on 4 August.
  • Aramis departing from Motril, Spain, arriving in El Aaiún on 24 July, discharging, left 29 July for Motril arrival 3 August (via Las Palmas)

The three vessels Johannes (IMO 9815343), Aramis, (IMO 9815529) and Breb Countess (IMO 9421166) are all in the fleet of German company Briese Schiffahrt

In addition, WSRW has detected two other vessels over the last weeks that might also be connected to supplies to the controversial Boujdour wind farm. This has not been confirmed. 

Morocco's energy projects in the occupied territory take place without the consent of the people of Western Sahara, and are in violation of international humanitarian law. 

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