The Norwegian-flagged vessel “Statsraad Lehmkuhl”, which is carrying out marine scientific research activities in Argentine jurisdictional waters, held a ceremony at the sinking point of the ARA submarine “San Juan”.
The sailboat-class ship, 98 meters long and with a crew of 30 people, is part of the “One Ocean 2021-2023” expedition, which consists of sailing around the world with the aim of spreading knowledge about the importance of the sea for sustainable development. For 20 months, the “Statsraad Lehmkuhl” will sail 55,000 nautical miles and visit 36 ports around the globe.
The sailboat set sail on August 20 from Arendal (Norway) and includes in its itinerary the arrival at the port of Ushuaia on March 30, where it will remain until April 1, the date on which it will begin sailing around Cape Horn to then return to the Port of Ushuaia, on April 7.
Within the framework of Law No. 20,489, which regulates marine scientific research activities (ICM) carried out by foreign individuals or legal entities or international organizations in waters subject to national sovereignty, it is provided that such activities may not be carried out without the prior permission of the National Executive Branch, through the Chief of the General Staff of the Navy. On this occasion, Navy Lieutenant Diego Miguel Abraham Suárez, a member of the Staff of the corvette ARA “Gómez Roca”, was sent as a national observer.
Through the Resolution of the General Staff of the Navy and a Provision of the Deputy Head of the General Staff of the Navy, the Directorate of Maritime Interests was designated as the Authority for the Application of the Procedure for the Authorization of ICM Campaigns and Guide of the National Observer (Representative) aboard foreign units performing ICM.
Tribute to the crew of the ARA “San Juan”
The ship “Statsraad Lehmkuhl” was leased by the Royal Norwegian Navy until the end of March for the training of 72 cadets, under the charge of Frigate Captain Dag Huseby-Hanssen, culminating his commission with an informal visit to the port of Ushuaia. From that moment, the ship will have civil status again.
At the site of the sinking of the ARA “San Juan” submarine, Navy Lieutenant Abraham Suárez spoke allusive words, in front of the cadets and officers of the Royal Norwegian Navy Academy, and the ship’s crew.
In this regard, the Argentine official stated: “Since that day of the discovery of the remains, on November 17, 2018, we know that our comrades watch over the waters of the Argentine Sea as sentinels of the Homeland, leaving there a legacy of patriotism that we must never forget. As sailors and soldiers, it is important to understand that our mission is always to protect our country, but we also have to understand that tragedies often occur in times of peace and we must be prepared for it.”
Likewise, a Norwegian cadet spoke allusive words and read a poem. Next, Lieutenant Abraham Suárez together with Captain Huseby-Hanssen threw a crown into the water, while a cadet sang the song “Eternal Father.”
To conclude, a minute of silence was observed and the Argentine flag was hoisted.