- Associated Press - Thursday, March 29, 2012

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA (AP) - A federal judge has ordered representatives of Greenpeace USA to stay a kilometer away from Shell Oil’s drilling vessels destined for Arctic Ocean waters off Alaska’s northern shores.

The 29-page order signed Wednesday by Judge Sharon Gleason in Anchorage grants a preliminary injunction requested by Shell through Oct. 31, the end of the open water drilling season. A 500-meter safety zone is in place for support vessels.

The restrictions apply to U.S. territorial waters up to 12 miles from shore and could be extended to 200 miles off shore.

Shell sought the injunction after Greenpeace New Zealand activists, including actress Lucy Lawless, in February boarded the Shell drill ship Noble Discoverer before it left for the U.S. West Coast for cold-weather modifications. The activists were arrested.

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