BMZ Group update: as of 31 August, 13:52 UTC, the Poet Qabil has arrived in the Indian port of Hazira, after its status had been listed: ARMED TEAM ON BOARD, with its AIS “ping” of 08-20 09:34, located in the Red Sea midway between Jeddah and Port Sudan (20.80078°N/ 38.21693°E), according to MarineTraffic.com. VesselFinder.com listed the same status with the location update on Aug 21, 2016 18:51 at 16.77124 N/40.69882 E, approaching the Gulf of Aden. The armed team was likely that of a private security company having boarded in the Red Sea to defend against a perceived threat of attack. See the International Maritime Organization document concerning this designation. The Poet Qabil was on the last leg of a lengthy journey from the Latvian port of Riga to the originally listed Indian port of Kandla.

We have been continuing to sporadically monitor the fleet of ships in which Bilal Erdoğan (the son of the Turkish president) is an investor. (See previous update of April 23.) Our interest had been peaked with reports that the fleet had been transporting oil originating from ISIS-held areas to European ports. We had tracked several of these suspect shipments from the Turkish port of Mersin. Notably, since the drastic reduction of ISIS oil production (OilPrice.com), none of the ships in the BMZ group have stopped in Mersin, where the last port of call was that of the Mecid Aslanov on April 4.

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