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Canadian 'Ghost' Ship Approaching Coast of Russia's Far East

A Canadian ghost barge was spotted drifting about 70-80 kilometers off the coast of the Chukotka autonomous district.

A Canadian ghost barge that has drifted more than 800 kilometers without a crew has been spotted off the coast of Russia's Far East, border guards said Thursday.

The vessel NATL II was spotted drifting about 70-80 kilometers off the coast of the Chukotka autonomous district between the villages of Vankarem and Mys Shmidta, the regional border guard agency said in an online statement.

The barge was cut free from a tug in stormy seas last October, after delivering supplies to a remote location on the Canadian coastline, U.S. media reports said at the time.

It first entered Russian waters in December, and border guards said they have been making regular trips out to the vessel to monitor the potential threat of an oil spillage.

There are about 3.6 tons of fuel onboard the ship, according to border guard estimates.

The guards also said in their statement that they were continuing to monitor a South Korean vessel that has been drifting off the coast of Russia for more than three years.

The Oriental Angel trawler burnt out in the Bering Sea in November 2011, though no fuel spillages have been reported.

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