New Delhi: Sri Lankan Navy on Sunday stated that it has arrested at least 14 Indian fishermen for allegedly poaching in the country’s territorial waters. It also stated that it has seized their 3. The arrests were made on Saturday in the seas north of the Delft island.

“Sri Lanka Navy apprehended 14 Indian fishermen along with 3 fishing trawlers for poaching in Sri Lankan territorial waters on December 28,” the statement from the Sri Lankan Navy stated.

After making them going through a medical examination, the fishermen will be handed over to the assistant director of fisheries in Jaffna for further action.

However, the issues of fishermen have has been a longstanding matter between the two neighbouring countries and a joint working group has been set up to resolve the issue.

During his last visit to India, Srilankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had announced to release all Indian boats in Srilankan custody and stated that necessary process in this regard has commenced.

As per updates, the number of Indian fishing trawlers entering Sri Lankan waters has been significantly reduced. It is primarily because of the increased patrolling along the international marine border.

The Sri Lankan Navy in January 2018 increased by over 100 times the fine on foreign vessels to deter them from fishing in its waters.

Prior to this, four Indian fishermen were in August this year, arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy for allegedly fishing in the island nation’s territorial waters. They were later handed over to a Sri Lanka Coast Guard craft and escorted to the naval base SLNS Elara.