24 Filipino Fishermen Held in Indonesia

JAKARTA: Authorities have arrested at least 24 Filipino fishermen on board two vessels for alleged illegal fishing in waters off North Maluku province in Indonesia, media reports said.

The first ship seized by Indonesian authorities was the 29 gross ton KM Tuna Mandiri with a crew of 12 Filipinos on Dec. 18. On board the KM Tuna Mandiri, police found 300 tuna fish, 24 small boats, 48 fishing tools, a GPS unit and 2 radio units. The following day, the 15 gross ton KM Johnny II, manned by a crew of 12 Filipinos, was caught in the Halmahera Sea. Similar items and around 25 tuna fish were seized from the KM Johnny II, reported Tempo.

Based on reports, although KM Johnny II flew the Indonesian flag, Indonesian authorities presumed the ship to be Filipino-owned.

The arrest of the Filipino fisherman comes more than a year after the Philippines and Indonesia formally agreed to pursue discussions on a possible negotiation regarding their overlapping continental shelves, the report said.

The Joint Statement between the Philippines and the Republic of Indonesia Concerning the Delimitation of the Continental Shelf Boundary was inked by Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario and then Indonesian Foreign Minister Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa on October 10, 2014 at the Bali International Convention Center in the presence of visiting President Benigno Aquino III and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, said the news portal.


(Source: FilipinoTimes.ae)

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