Argentinean Defense Minister, Arturo Puricelli, and the 'Playa da Cativa', one of the intercepted fishing vessels. (Photo: mindef.gov.ar/Stock File)
Two Falkland-licenced fishing vessels intercepted
Wednesday, September 05, 2012, 01:50 (GMT + 9)
The Argentinean Navy intercepted two Falkland Islands-flagged fishing vessels and ordered them to stop their activities in South Atlantic jurisdictional waters.
The incident occurred on Thursday, when a corvette from the Maritime Patrol Division of the Argentinean Navy was controlling the vessels fishing in the area adjacent to the Exclusive Economic Zone.
This marine area overlaps with the fishing area known as FOCZ (Falklands Outer Conservation Zone), established by the British after the Falklands War, which occurred in 1982.
The newspaper from Falklands Penguin News considered the performance of the Argentinean Navy as "bullying" and "harassment" of Argentinean warships to fishing vessels operating in the Falkland Islands.
In response, the defense minister of Argentina, Arturo Puricelli said "they are very nervous about the supportive policy of the Falklands cause by the Argentinean government."
"Therefore, they try to take advantage of all the possible ways to generate tension but that's not going to make us stop the peaceful demand of our islands," added the minister, according to the newspaper Ámbito Financiero.
The intercepted trawlers are Playa da Cativa and Playa de Sartaxens, both owned by the firm Moradiña, based in Pontevedra, Spain.
Amid the existing tension between the two parties, the president of the Falkland Islands Fishing Companies Association (FIFCA), Cheryl Robert, last week criticized Argentina's plans to incorporate 20 further jiggers in the Argentinean record to compete for fish stocks in the islands.
"This follows on from their totally inappropriate decision to open the Argentine 2012 squid season early. I said then that such a decision had scant regard for potential impact on conservation in our fishing zone in Falklands’ waters, or their own in Argentine waters," she added.
The Vice President of the entity, Hamish Wylie, described the initiative as "environmental terrorism," since it would affect the Illex squid fishery in the Falklands to make it less attractive to foreign fishing vessels.
- British ships not allowed to dock in Buenos Aires ports
- Jigger incorporation deadline extended
- More jiggers authorised to catch squid
By Analia Murias