Ships Are Flying False Flags to Dodge Sanctions
Illegal Russian tankers are a maritime nightmare.
Illegal Russian tankers are a growing maritime concern, with vessels registering in flag-of-convenience states to get around Western sanctions. These tankers transport oil from Russia, Venezuela, and Iran to customers in China and other countries, and an estimated 2 million barrels of sanctioned crude is transported every day. The lack of a maritime authority that can track every single vessel makes it difficult to identify these tankers and preserve context. Governments of Russia and Iran offer their insurance to such tankers, while fake insurers have also sprung up. Open-source intelligence experts have added knowledge about shady activities by monitoring publicly accessible sources, and now they should turn their attention to the tens of thousands of ships sailing the world's oceans. It will take a major crisis to bring this problem to the forefront and force the issue of sanctions compliance, as well as for Western governments to hold China accountable for its role in undermining sanctions against Russia. Read more
Russian invasion of Ukraine