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Finland, Estonia, Sweden to assess new info on M/S Estonia tragedy

Published : 28 Sep 2020, 13:01

Updated : 29 Sep 2020, 00:29

  DF Report

File picture of Utö island. Photo Visit Finland by Sara Terho.

The foreign ministers of Finland, Estonia and Sweden have agreed to jointly examine the new evidence that has appeared about the 1994 sinking of the cruise ship M/S Estonia.

Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto and his Estonian and Swedish counterparts Urmas Reinsalu and Ann Linde agreed that if the new information about the catastrophe is significant, they will jointly assess it, said the foreign ministry in a statement issued on Monday.

A Discovery Network documentary about the M/S Estonia disaster includes new underwater video footage from the wreck site showing damage on the ship’s starboard side.

The wreck was found sunk in a protected site in the international waters about 41 kilometres from the Utö Island of Finland.

The M/S Estonia sank on 28 September 1994, resulting in death of 852 people.

The three neighbouring countries agreed that verification of the new information presented in the documentary will be made in accordance and full respect of the agreement signed among the countries in 1995.

The fundamental idea of the agreement is to protect the M/S Estonia as a final place of rest for the victims of the disaster from any disturbing activities.

“Our countries will cooperate closely in this matter and Estonia as the Flag State will lead this process,” read the joint statement, adding that “Estonia, Finland and Sweden emphasize that they rely on the conclusions of the JAIC (Joint Accident Investigation Commission) Final Report of 1997.”