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U.S. Coast Guard denies entry to Yugoslavian captain's ship

April 10, 1999
Web posted at: 5:09 a.m. EDT (0909 GMT)

SAN DIEGO, California (CNN) -- A ship carrying a load of cars from Japan was denied entry Friday into the Port of San Diego because its captain was from Yugoslavia.

Coast Guard Chief Michael Claeys said the freighter "Iris Ace" was coming from Japan to California when it was denied entry into U.S. territorial waters.

The vessel has since gone to Ensenada, Mexico, where a skipper of non-Yugoslavian nationality replaced the former captain. The nationality of the new captain was not reported.

An executive order signed Monday began barring vessels flying the Yugoslav flag, or considered to be under control of the Belgrade government, from entering U.S. ports and territorial waters until further notice because of the ongoing NATO operations against Yugoslavia.

The order was designed to economically isolate the government of Yugoslavia and to protect against spying or sabotage.


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