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Japan sends team to Mauritius to investigate grounding incident

The Japanese government now sends a team of five people to Mauritius to scrutinize the incident with the Japanese vessel that ran aground a reef this summer and caused an environmental disaster.

The vessel ran aground on the reef off the coast of Mauritius. The Mauritian government has warned of an environmental disaster. Photo: Handout / Reuters / Ritzau Scanpix/VIA REUTERS / X80001

Japan's government plans to send a team of five people to Mauritius in a few days to investigate what happened with shipwrecked dry bulker MV Wakashio, Reuters reports.

The ship, owned by Japanese shipping company Nagashiki Shipping and on charter to MOL, ran aground off the island on July 25, causing 1,000 tonnes of oil to leak into the pristine waters surrounding the island nation.

MOL has since set aside USD 9.4 million for several initiatives in Mauritius. The five-person team is announced after Japan, according to Reuters, has previously promised to offer support at an "unprecedented scale".

Both the ship's captain and one crew member have been arrested following the incident. According to the flag authorities in Panama, which is where the vessel was flagged, a birthday aboard the ship allegedly led the captain to deviate from the set route to pick up a better internet connection.

That is how the vessel ended up running aground the reef off Mauritius.

English Edit: Ida Jacobsen

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