By Chris King • 21 January 2023 • 20:52
Sillouhette of a diver.
It has been revealed today, Saturday, January 21, that three Spanish divers were rescued from the freezing waters of the Baltic Sea off the coast of Poland last Saturday 14. Their boat had broken down off the coast of the northern city of Gdansk during a bad storm.
Their rescue took place at around 1:53am when Polish rescue services picked the three men up, suffering from the early effects of hypothermia. According to reports, they had spent the last six hours attempting to fix their boat’s engine, which had apparently broken down.
At the time of rescue, they were about eight kilometres off the coast of Poland. The Russian region of Kaliningrad and the strategic facilities of the city’s port – which is the largest in the Baltic – were also within reach.
When questioned by the Polish authorities, the Spaniards claimed they had been diving for amber. The area in which they were located does indeed contain the largest amber reserves in the world, as reported by larazon.es.
Their claim appeared a little unconvincing though given they were making a dive in icy Baltic water under the cover of darkness, during a huge storm. The Polish police assured that the divers did not have the permits to dive or to drive the boat, nor did they have the necessary insurance to carry out their ‘excursion’.
The three divers were rescued not far from the port of Naftoport, considered a critical infrastructure by the country’s authorities. Despite all of the above though, the three men were not arrested. All this occurred while Poland is under an anti-terrorism alert.
Poland’s media outlets are far from impressed with the behaviour of the police in releasing the ‘amber fishermen’ without even verifying their identity. Several pointed out that the 2019 anti-terrorism law would have allowed them to detain the suspects pending an investigation that would clarify the situation.
There are many speculations in the Polish media about the possible identity of these three Spanish citizens. Questions are of course being asked as to what led them to dive in the Baltic Sea in the early hours and without the necessary precautions.
Some of the most popular hypotheses on social networks point to Russian espionage or ‘a drug issue’. The theory of Russian espionage and the attack on a critical infrastructure has already been ruled out by the Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita, which gave voice to sources close to the investigation.
According to local press investigations, the men travelled to Poland in a car with a Spanish number plate. They chose not to fly to their destination, which would have facilitated their identification.
With the aid of an interpreter who, apparently, was not a Pole acting as a translator, the three Spaniards purchased the boat the day before. It was a boat that had not been used for between five and seven years, so it was not listed in any official registry.
As for the diving equipment, they rented very good quality professional suits in Gdynia, a town 30 minutes from Gdansk. They also carried ropes, fuel, and an underwater scooter designed to propel the diver.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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