Panel to probe docking of Russian vessel at SA naval base

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed a panel to investigate the docking of Russian frigate Lady R in Simon's Town.

JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed a panel to probe the circumstances surrounding the docking of the Russian vessel Lady R in Simon's Town.

Ramaphosa says the impact on international relations and the public outcry compelled him to act.

READ: US-SA relations | US welcomes probe of Russian arms

US ambassador Reuben Brigety accused South Africa of providing weapons to Russia through the vessel but later apologised.

Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya says the panel is expected to conclude their probe within six weeks.

READ: Ramaphosa rubbishes claims that SA is arming Russia

"The president decided to establish the inquiry because of the seriousness of the allegations, the extent of public interest and the impact on South Africa's international relations.

"The panel will complete its investigations within six weeks of its appointment and will be expected to deliver its report to the president within two weeks," Magwenya said.

"The panel may request an extension to these time frames, should it be necessary."

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