President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: I gave you the instruction to find out what happened to our cargo ship, the Arctic Sea. What measures have you taken, and what do you have to report?
Minister of defence Anatoly Serdyukov: In accordance with your instruction we organised a search for the ship. Today, at 1 a.m. Moscow time, it was discovered 300 miles off the coast of Cape Verde. The crew members are now on board our frigate, Ladny, and are answering questions about the circumstances of the ship’s disappearance and why it broke off contact.
I think that within the next few hours we will get a more detailed picture of what exactly happened, why contact with them was broken, why they changed course, and all the other possible related circumstances.
Dmitry Medvedev: Are the crew members all alive?
Anatoly Serdyukov: Yes, they are all alive. They are all safe and sound. They are not under any sort of armed control. We have transferred them to our frigate and are talking them through what happened.
Dmitry Medvedev: The naval authorities, who by law have the powers to investigate such incidents in the open sea, and our investigators, need to investigate this case in accordance with the law. We will, of course, inform everyone concerned, everyone connected to this case, of the results.
Anatoly Serdyukov: I think that we will be able to give the details of what happened by the end of today.
Dmitry Medvedev: Then report to me and give the information to the media.