22 Nov 2011

FFA completes unprecedented surveillance effort

1:31 pm on 22 November 2011

The Forum Fisheries Agency says a week-long surveillance operation led to eight vessels being apprehended for alleged illegal fishing.

The Honiara-based agency says Operation Kurikuri 2011 earlier this month was the biggest coordinated effort to clamp down on illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing in the Pacific.

Australia, New Zealand, France and the United States assisted with patrol boats and planes to help oversee a part of the roughly 30 million square kilometres of ocean that includes the exclusive economic zones of the Agency's member countries.

The operation saw 80 vessels boarded by patrol boats from Solomon Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, Tuvalu and France.

The effort was in line with a regional strategy to have sustainable fisheries which are a key revenue earner for Pacific Island countries.