SLN plundering Tamil catches

[TamilNet, Friday, 14 November 1997, 23:59 GMT]
The culinary and business inclinations of the Sri Lankan navy have hit the poor fishermen of Eluvaithivu below the belt as it were. Each of the hundred and fifty fishermen in this small island which lies south west of the Jaffna peninsula have to regularly supply the Sri Lankan navy 10 kilograms of lobster.

The fishermen complain that they cannot afford to lose their precious catch in this manner. But say that they are helpless because the SL navy controls the seas in these parts.

Lobsters fetch the very high prices in Colombo- a medium one might sell for 700 rupees.

The fishermen are scared that if they defy such orders from SLN sailors in patrol boats which cast anchor often off the islands, anything can happen to them (the fishermen) while out at sea.

Scores of fishermen including many from Tamil Nadu have been shot dead by the SLN in the waters south west of the peninsula.

The fishermen of Eluvaithivu recently took up their problem with the EPDP in Jaffna. The organisation discussed the matter with the Navy's northern command (ComNorth).

No remedial action was taken.

The impoverished fishermen continue to pay the SL navy with their hard earned lobster catch.


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