MOSCOW Feb 17 Russia's navy denied on Tuesday
that any of its ships could have caused a 300-tonne oil slick
discovered off the coast of Ireland, though it confirmed its
vessels had refuelled nearby.
Ireland's Department of Transport said on Monday that 300
tonnes of oil had been found close to the Russian navy ships and
that the oil probably leaked during refuelling.
"Russian ships did indeed refuel in one of the areas but
there have been no accidents on board ... in terms of ruptures
in pipelines or fuel tanks," said Russian navy spokesman Igor
"Equally, there has been no deliberate dumping of fuel
overboard. That is absolutely out of the question," Dygalo said
in a statement.
The spill occurred 50 miles (80 km) south of Fastnet
lighthouse, Ireland's most southwesterly point, and spread over
an area measuring 4 miles by 5 miles (6.4 km by 8 km), the
It said the slick was not expected to reach the shore.
The Russian navy said the incident had been exaggerated in
media reports that estimated the spill at between 12 and 400
"It is not catastrophic in nature and does not present a
threat to the coastal environment," Dygalo said.
(Reporting by Conor Sweeney; Editing by Phakamisa Ndzamela)