Indonesian authorities detain one Malaysian, two Filipino fishing boats

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian authorities have detained three foreign fishing boats - two from the Philippines and one from Malaysia - for allegedly violating the fishing licencing regulations while fishing in Indonesian waters.

The Philippines-flagged fishing boats were nabbed by the Indonesian warship KRI Sultan Hasanuddin-366 in Sulawesi waters on October 21, 2015, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti told the press here on Tuesday.

The Filipino boats are FB Dave weighing 35 GT and 30-GT MV Boko-Boko.

They are suspected of fishing in the Indonesian Exclusive Economic Zone (ZEE) without having legal documents that only the Indonesian government could have issued, the minister said.

The boats were towed to the Tarakan naval base to carry out further legal process.

The 22-GT Malaysian boat was nabbed by the East Kalimantan water police.

The boat with two crew members was found fishing in Indonesian waters without having a sailing permit or a fishing permit from the Indonesian authorities.

Minister Susi Pudjiastuti hoped the boats could be destroyed by the authorities soon.

Previously, the Peoples Coalition for Fishery Justice (Kiara) had urged the Joko Widodo (Jokowi) administration to prioritize enhancing the fishermens welfare, rather than focusing merely on the fight against illegal fishing activities.

"President Jokowi and the ministers in his Working Cabinet should not only focus on illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing activities," Secretary General of Kiara Abdul Halim said on Oct. 20.

The fight against illegal fishing is just a minor part of the governments responsibility to develop a prosperous coastal community.

According to him, the most important thing is to improve their welfare by providing facilities and basic needs of good quality that the community living in coastal areas should be able to afford.(*)