SLN relaxes fishing ban in Thondamannar-VVT seas

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 March 2006, 12:07 GMT]
Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) announced relaxation of restrictions on fishing to the east of Kankesanthurai harbor from Thondamannar to Valvettiturai shores, during a meeting between Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) Jaffna representatives, SLN officers and Jaffna Fisheries Union representatives at Chithampara College, Valvettiturai, held around noon Sunday, sources from Jaffna said.

Following increased violence in Jaffna district during December 2005, the SLN had imposed fishing ban from Mathakal to the West of KKS high security zone to Valvettiturai to the east of the KKS harbor from 1st of January.

The SLN command during refused to lift the ban between the KKS harbor and the Thondamannar or the shores west of KKS to Mathakal, attendees to the meeting said.

The partial lifting of ban was a result of continous protest by fishermen in the Jaffna district and due to complaints made by the Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian to Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse, fisheries officials said.

SLN also said that old passes distributed by the Ministry of Fisheries will no longer be accepted and that the fishermen should obtain passes with photographs newly being issued by the SLN. Fishermen should submit applications at the SLN's Inparutty camp, the applications will then be forwarded to Colombo from where the passes will be issued, the SLN said.

Fisheries officials say that this new condition will prevent many fisher families to start fishing from Monday. The SLN started issueing passes only two weeks ago and many returning fishermen who relocated to LTTE controlled areas do not yet have the passes. Also, fisheries officials added that the SLN is refusing to grant passes for families who relocated to Northern shores from other areas after the tsunami.

 

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