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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 107

Sri Lanka Navy Repatriates 32 Indian Fishermen along with 06 minors

By Ravin Edirisinghe

Colombo, 18 September, ( Sri Lanka Navy took swift action to repatriate 38 Indian Nationals to the Indian Coast Guard vessel “Kittu Chennamma” at the International Maritime Boundry Line (IMBL) North-West of Delft on the 14th September around 11.00 am. These Indian fishermen were detected when they were well with in the Sri Lankan waters in the Northern seas.

Naval fleet units which are on high alert in the northern seas with the aim of detecting possible LTTE smuggling attempts across the Palk Strait detected these fishing boats when they were trespassing into Sri Lanka territorial waters.

As a gesture of goodwill which prevails between the two navies and importantly between the two countries, Sri Lanka naval authorities took prompt and speedy action in making this repatriation a success.

These Indian nationals were brought to the naval base in Delft Island and were provided with their basic needs. The naval officials took no legal action in this incident. Based on humanitarian aspect they were given with the best possible hospitality and were looked after well till the time the repatriation was done.

These fishermen were apprehended in two occasions off Kakarativu Island and East of Palaitivu Island.

LTTE terrorists in many occasions have taken the advantage of these Indian fishermen to tarnish the image of the Sri Lanka Navy. When sea tigers cannot face the naval fleet units out at sea they have reverted to the tactic of blaming the navy for killing or injuring Indian fishermen when actually they were behind the scene of conducting such terror. The pressure amounted by various political figures who have sympathy towards the LTTE has been high during such incidents and in all such occasions the Navy have vehemently denied such baseless allegations. These developments have been well understood by both countries.

It is important here to reiterate that no matter how hard the LTTE will try to create a political issue using both Sri Lanka Navy and the Indian fishermen, Sri Lanka Navy has taken both tactical and operational measures to overcome the situation and provide all possible assistance to the Indian fishing community and will continue the same gesture of good will in the future too.

- Asian Tribune -

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