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Sea Shepherd discusses denunciation of fishermen, despite expulsion from Panama

Members of the John Paul Dejoria vessel, from the Sea Shepherd conservationist NGO, told Efe today that they will abide by the expulsion of Panamanian waters, although they are considering denouncing the Fishermen who confronted and approached them in a restricted area near the Coiba National Park.

Panama, July 11 (EFE) .- Members of the vessel John Paul Dejoria, conservationist Sea Shepherd, told Efe today that they will accept the expulsion of Panamanian waters, although Are studying to denounce the fishermen who faced and approached them in a restricted zone, near the National Park Coiba.

The ship painted with colors of blue camouflage and with flag Barbadiense, still anchored at a pier in Amador in Panama, had an altercation with fishermen on June 28 when he was documenting the activities in the area "If they (fishermen) are going to sue us, so will we, because they attacked us when we were static at sea, and also because they accused us of carrying Weapons, when all we had to defend ourselves was our cameras, "the first officer of the ship, the Spanish Antonio Sueiras told Efe.

The navigator reported that when they crossed Towards the boundaries of the park and watched a group of fishermen with nets in the water approached to see what types of species they fished with the intention of documenting it, but the Sea Shepherd "When we decided to leave the area, some of the boats that were in the place rebuked us by the radio and one of them us Aboard and struck on the port side, "added Suerias, who also said that there were seven boats between boats for industrial and sport fishing.

Given the situation, the Authority Panama's Maritime Authority (AMP) welcomed the fishermen's complaint and the Panama Aquatic Resources Authority (ARAP) decided to investigate the case.

In a statement last July 3 ARAP indicated that they rejected any type of intervention, monitoring and control by foreign vessels to national vessels in jurisdictional waters.

On July 7 AMP decided to issue the Sea Shepherd's expulsion order for allegedly violating the "pleasure" navigation permit it issued in April.

Authorities, Sueiras reiterated that they have asked the authorities for answers about the permit, since they state that they were taking photos, an activity they consider to be recreational.

The official said That the vessel he runs carries out the surveillance campaign "Operation Treasured Islands", which seeks the conservation of the islands located along the Galápagos Corridor, Considered one of the richest ecosystems on the planet.

"Our intention is to document populations of marine species, and if we encounter some strange activity along the way, We take pictures and videos, we get data from boats and we report it to the authorities that are the ones that have to determine if the activity is legal and illegal. "

The activist said that he knows that authorities and ministries sometimes do not have the resources to carry out surveillance in their maritime zones, and that a foreign organization

"Our intention is not to carry out any function that corresponds to the local authorities, but denounce something that We think it may be illegal, we do not define where we can fish, "said the ship's spokesman.

Now the ship's crew will wait this week until they are finished The repairs of the boat to leave the country, once completed will be escorted by the National Aeronautic Service (SENAN) to international waters.

Coiba National Park (270,125 (493 square kilometers) and is an area declared World Natural Heritage by Unesco (2005). Areas where fishing is not allowed.

It also implements a Management Plan for the Protection and Ordinance of Coiba of 2009 regulating artisanal and sport fishing in More distant areas, as well as the species that can be captured and the type of tools allowed.

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