Friday, May 18, 2007

Puntland releases mislabeled "Finnish" fishermen

Seems those allegedly "Finnish" fishermen (see here) captured by Puntland were mostly Yemeni, as set here, and now they'v been released:
A group of 130 mainly Yemeni fishermen arrested by authorities off Somalia's breakaway northern region of Puntland more than two weeks ago have been released, a maritime official said on Friday.

Puntland officials detained the fishermen on May 2, in what was initially reported as a pirate attack, and charged them with illegal fishing on May 11, said Andrew Mwangura of the Kenyan branch of the international Seafarers Assistance Programme.

The fishermen, including one Tanzanian and nine Egyptians as well as 120 Yemenis, were "sent home after Yemeni and Puntland officials talked over the issue," Mwangura said.

They had been fishing in three large European-owned, Yemen-based boats and nine small Yemeni boats. The European vessels were not Finnish, as initially reported, Mwangura said.

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