Colombo, July 13 (newsin.asia) – The Sri Lanka Navy, on Thursday arrested seven Indian fishermen for poaching illegally in the island’s northern seas, the navy said here in a statement.
Two fishing trawlers belonging to the Indian fishermen were also taken into custody.
The fishermen were engaged in bottom trawling in Sri Lankan territorial waters Northwest of Delft Island, the navy said.
Having brought the arrested fishermen to the naval base ‘SLNS Uththara’ in Kankasanthurai and fishing trawlers and their fishing gear to ‘SLNS Elara’ in Kareinagar, they are due to be handed over to the Jaffna Assistant Director of Fisheries for onward legal action, the navy said.
The Sri Lankan government recently warned that Indian fishermen trespassing into Sri Lankan waters to fish illegally will continue to be arrested and their boats will be taken into custody.
Sri Lanka and Indian fishermen often face arrests when they enter each other’s territorial waters illegally with both countries attempting to find a lasting solution to the Indo-Lanka fishing dispute.
Sri Lanka’s Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera informed Parliament last week that tight measures continued to be in place protect the island’s territorial waters due to which the number of Indian fishing boats entering Sri Lankan waters illegally had seen a drop.
He said India had also taken the issue of Indian fishermen poaching in Sri Lankan waters seriously.