Basrah Breeze (Ex-Ocean Breeze, Al Yamamah, Qadissiyat Saddam)
LENGTH: 269ft. (82m)
SHIPYARD: Helsingör, Denmark
The fate of Saddam Hussein’s former yacht is still unknown. Originally built for Hussein in Denmark in 1981, the yacht was listed by brokerage firm Burgess for some time with no apparent takers. Since 1986, the yacht had been docked in Saudi Arabia’s port of Jidah until it surfaced in Nice where it was put up for sale as Ocean Breeze. In January of 2008, French authorities seized the yacht docked for months on the French Riviera, pending resolution of an ownership dispute. According to Ardavan Amir-Aslani, the lawyer representing the Iraqi government, the yacht was bought and paid for by the Iraqi government and is the rightful property of the Iraqi people. French courts settled the dispute, and in the end the Iraqi government prevailed. Rumor has it she was used as a cruise ship after being returned to Iraq. Believed to still be for sale with an asking price of around $34.4 million, the yacht can accommodate 28 guests and 35 crew. A 2007 Le Figaro article described the yacht’s opulent interior and pointed out security features such as bulletproof windows, machine gun storage, a missile-launching system and a secret passage to an escape mini-submarine that the newspaper says is included in the purchase price.
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