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Malta boat dodging Gaddafi's patrol boats to carry aid to Misurata

Company director charters vessel to Misurata, ABC News reports.

30 March 2011, 12:00am
The director of a company based in Malta, Tarek Tarhouni, has told ABC news he runs “the gauntlet of Libyan navy patrol boats to run desperately needed food and medicine into the besieged rebel port city of Misurata.”

Tarhouni has chartered a small vessel to Misurata port to send supplies.

Tarek Tarhouni had already been quoted in a report by The Times as one of several Libyans residing in Malta who was returning to the North African country to help their co-nationals as the humanitarian crisis escalated, back on 6 March.

“Getting in and out, it’s very, very difficult. In fact we failed in several attempts but we managed to sneak through,” Tarhouny told ABC news. “We’re just dodging the patrol boats. You have to be very patient and just make a dash for it.”

Tarhouni told Eleanor Hall on ABC's The World Today that he is "coordinating a humanitarian relief operation that involves smuggling supplies in by sea."

LISTEN TO THE PROGRAMME HERE

Tarhouni is quoted as saying that the patrol boats would fire if they could and his team makes sure they stay out of their way.

“Our guys can hear them on the radio, but obviously their intention is clear by blocking the port,” he said. “We didn’t even get the chance to prevent their intentions, but obviously their intention there is just to make sure that nothing goes in or out. We make sure that we stay within their fighting distance. Some of these patrol boats can be quite fast.”

The supplies are mainly medical and food. “We are extremely worried about the situation,” he told ABC. “The supply vessel we’re using is very small because you cannot risk a large vessel. It’s a war zone. Nobody will be able to enter into that area. It’s like a smuggling operation what we’re running. We concentrated on medicine because obviously they are short of… doctors as well.”

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Jesmond Bugeja
@ Robin Huud Ask no questions, and you will be told no lies.
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Samuel Farrugia
The supplies are mainly medical and food. why mainly food and medical supplies is their some other cargo being shipped as well??
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