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Cosco arms ship leaves Durban, lingers off Luanda with guns for Zimbabwe

DESPITE comments by Chinese officials, it appears that Cosco's An Yue Jiang, caught carrying arms for Zimbabwe's armed forces in Durban, is not yet returning to China, but was lingering off Angola, according to the Maritime Global Net Newsletter.

The International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) says the Angolan dockers union Federacao dos Sindicatos dos Trabalhadores dos Transportes e Comunicacoes de Angola (FSTTCA) has declared that its members will refuse to unload any arms bound for Zimbabwe.

Contrary to some reports, the ITF says the An Yue Jiang is off Luanda, Angola, and has not made any sign of returning to China since fleeing Durban in late April.

The Zimbabwean, a self described newspaper in exile, reported that the ship had turned off its transponder to conceal its whereabouts, adding that the 17 tons of cargo consisted of three million rounds of AK47 ammunition, 1,500 RPGs and thousands of mortar rounds,

"It appears that the ship slowed right down, probably while it awaited orders. The fact that it then made full speed for Luanda suggests that it got them," said ITF General Secretary David Cockroft.

"Given the lack of any promise from Cosco or the Chinese government, the world will be watching what happens next," said Mr Cockroft.
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