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  • » 07/24/2009, 00.00

    SRI LANKA

    Sri Lanka, fishermen win the war: invasive techniques banned

    Melani Manel Perera

    The Supreme Court declares fishing with dynamite and various types of nets outlawed. Success for fishermen and activists who have defended their rights, against the multinationals of the fisheries sector. It will also allow for better management of resources and marine life.

    Colombo (AsiaNews) – In a battle that has lasted years, finally the small fishermen of  Sri Lanka have won their war: the National Supreme Court has banned certain types of fishing nets and other methods that have a devastating impact on marine flora, accepting a legal action initiated by trade associations and human rights activists.

    On July 21 last the Sinhalese judges put an end to the dispute, stating that "the Attorney General shall immediately initiate legal action” against fishing with certain types of nets or other means, including traps and explosives “banned because destructive”.  

    The National Fisheries Solidarity Movement (NAFSO) and its sister organization Southern Fisheries Organization (SFO) launched the battle of small fishermen, with the assistance of Kalyananda Thiranagam from Lawyers for Human Rights and Development in Sri Lanka (LHRD).  

    The ban states that explosives such as dynamite can no longer be used, as well as various types of fishing nets. Herman Kumara, NAFSO President and Secretary General of the World Forum of Fisher People (WFFP) defines the ruling “a great victory for the traditional fishermen”. He explains that the courts decision will allow  “support for the economy of small-scale fishermen”, threatened by “large the multinational fishing industry”, as well as conserve resources and prevent excessive exploitation, which leads to a “collapse [of the industry]in the long term”.

    The SFO Secretary adds that “80% of the traditional fishermen in the southern provinces will benefit from the law" as will the environment. India, Pakistan and other nations in the region congratulated NAFSO, stressing that "this victory is beneficial not only for fishermen in Sri Lanka, but it is a victory for traditional fishermen world over”.

     

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    See also

    12/12/2009 SRI LANKA
    Sri Lanka: Negombo fishermen protesting against government and police
    On the Day for the Defence of Human Rights 500 members of the National Fisheries Solidarity Movement and other associations in the fisheries sector have demonstrated against illegal fishing and the inaction of government and police. For them Colombo’s policies encourages the logic of profit and the development of tourism at the expense of small fishermen.

    05/04/2011 SRI LANKA
    Sri Lanka: Textile industry profits on the back of exploited and underpaid women
    women still don’t earn enough to support their families. In 2010 recorded profits of over € 2.5 billion, but 42% is the result of the low cost of labour.

    08/11/2014 SRI LANKA
    Mudslide in Sri Lanka, the State "knew, but did not warn the people"
    Rev. Marimuttu Sathivel, an Anglican priest and member of the Christian Solidarity Movement (CSM) claims authorities were warned of possible disaster in which hundreds of people died, buried alive in their homes. But no one ordered to evacuate the area.

    23/11/2009 SRI LANKA
    Small-scale fishermen call on government to stop trampling their rights and the environment
    On World Fisheries Day, the National Fisheries Solidarity Movement accuses the government of protecting big fishing companies at the expense of small-scale fishermen and fish stock. The group appeals to President Rajapaksa.

    30/11/2016 16:49:00 SRI LANKA
    Sri Lankan fishermen's movement celebrates 20 years of activities (Photos)

    The anniversary was celebrated to coincide with World Fisheries Day. The first step towards the National Fisheries Solidarity Movement took place in 1993. Formally, the association was established in 1997, with people from all religious backgrounds. It advocates human rights, sustainable development, and the protection of the environment, land and resources.





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