SLA re-imposes fishing ban along Northern coastal villages
[TamilNet, Monday, 19 May 2008, 15:50 GMT]
Sri Lanka security forces stopped fishermen from going out to sea Monday after announcing earlier in the week that fishing ban that was instituted three days from Thursday to Saturday will be lifted. The sudden ban further worsenend woes of northern fishermen already reeling from the economic hardships. Fishermen were sent back from the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) checkpoints Monday when they went to present identities before venturing out to sea, Fisheries Union officials said in Point Pedro.
Fishermen from villages from Vadamaraadchi north to Vadamaraadchi east, including Thondamanaaru, Valvettiththu'rai, Polika'ndi, Inparutti, Munai, Katkoava'lam, Ma'natkaadu, and Kudaththanai were affected by the sudden ban, according to Fisheries Union officials.
Residents from Vadamaraadchi said that due to shortage of fish in the market, the prices of fish rose during the week, and shortage further worsened today.
Although general fishing ban is operative across the coastal villages in Jaffna Peninsula, Sri Lanka Security Forces have been allowing fishermen to go out to sea and stay within one mile from the coast using boats without outboard motors. Complete ban on fishing, however, pushes the fisher families to severe economic hardship and destitution, civil society sources said.
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) imposes fishing ban at will, especially when key Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) ships are close to the northern shores, or when merchandize or military equipment gets shipped to Kaankeasanthrai from Trincomalee.
Sudden imposition of fishing ban points to some key SLN activity in the northern seas, informed sources in Jaffna said.