Krishna expresses India’s concern at detention of fishermen by Lankan Navy

Thursday, February 17, 2011

NEW DELHI - External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna on Thursday spoke to his Sri Lankan counterpart G.L. Peiris and expressed India’s deep concern at the detention of nearly 136 fishermen in Jaffna district.

“I have just had a telephonic conversation with the Minister of External Affairs of Sri Lanka Professor Peiris and I have conveyed India’s deep concern at the detention of nearly 136 fishermen in Jaffna district, and I have also conveyed my deep regret that Sri Lankan nationals and Sri Lankan fishermen have taken law into their hands and confronted our fishermen,” said Krishna.

“I have suggested that the fishermen to be released, the process should be started. It so happens that today is a holiday in Sri Lanka and courts are not functioning today, and we are hoping that tomorrow it will function. By tomorrow, I am hopeful that the Sri Lankan government will take the necessary steps to get all the 136 fishermen released,” he added.

The Sri Lankan Navy has arrested a total of 142 Indian fishermen over the last few days.

The fishermen were apprehended along with their boats on Wednesday by a group of local Sri Lankan fishermen and were later handed over to the Lankan Police.

Around 112 Indian fishermen were detained in Sri Lanka on Tuesday for allegedly straying into the Lankan waters. They were produced before a Point Pedro Magistrate court in Jaffna yesterday and remanded to judicial custody until February 28.

This is the fourth such incident of fishermen either being killed or detained in Lanka this year. (ANI)

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