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Release of 9 Pinoy fishermen in Eritrea sought

By Ding Cervantes (The Philippine Star) | Updated April 4, 2016 - 12:00am ANGELES CITY, Philippines – The Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) appealed yesterday to the Eritrean government to release immediately nine Filipino fishermen who were arrested for straying into the country’s waters.

The nine fishermen came from Saudi Arabia and unwittingly crossed the boundary of the North African state.

In a statement, Pamalakaya sought humanitarian consideration from the Eritrean government, stressing that the Filipino fishermen were “victims of  anti-fisherfolk policies in their own country.”

“It is ironic that we are an archipelagic country rich in marine resources, yet Filipino fishermen are forced to go to faraway places almost beyond the reach of their own government for protection,” said Pamalakaya vice chairman Salvador France.

France said that much of the blame for the plight of Filipino fishermen should be pinned on the Fisheries Code of 1998. 

“It is the main culprit why fishermen remain among the poorest in the last 18 years,” he said.



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