Jaffna fishermen protest fishing limits
[TamilNet, Saturday, 03 March 2007, 05:18 GMT]
The fishermen of Pashaiyoor, Gurunagar, Kolumbuththurai and Navanthurai in the Jaffna municipal area protested the limited access to fishing authorized by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) hierarchy and refused to fish Friday, fisheries sources in Jaffna said. The SLA allowed fishermen to fish in shallow waters only up to 500 meters from the shore,
SLA made the concessionary announcement after the representatives of the Goodwill Committee for Peace and Justice met the SLA hierarchy on Thursday and requested the lifting of total ban on fishing.
Nearly 4,000 local fishermen rejected the offer saying that 500 meter in the shallow water sea is knee deep and does not contain enough fish stock worth fishing, and vowed to boycott until they are allowed to go fishing in boats, fisheries union officials said.
SLA regularly announces ban on fishing in the seas around Jaffna Peninsula and remove the ban after a few days. The latest ban was announced on 21 February expecting possible breakout of violence on the completion of five years for the Cease Fire Agreement between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE.