US ship carrying food aid detained in Angola

AP News
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Posted: Mar 16, 2011 12:05 PM
US ship carrying food aid detained in Angola

The U.S. says a cargo ship and its load of American food aid for Africa has been delayed for weeks in Angola because of questions about ammunition it also was carrying.

Adele Gillen, spokeswoman for the U.S. Embassy in Luanda, said Wednesday that U.S. officials had met repeatedly with Angolan officials since the Maersk Constellation and its 23 crew members were detained at a port on Feb. 28.

She says the U.S. is concerned about the well-being of the crew, 20 of whom are American, and about the delay in the shipment of corn, soy and beans reaching Rwanda, Malawi and Mozambique.

The shipping line, Maersk, said in a statement earlier this week that it believed the matter would soon be resolved. Maersk says Kenya's government has declared it owns the ammunition.