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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Cambodian flag flies on boats fishing illegally

Cambodian flag flies on boats fishing illegally

CAMBODIA has been criticized by the international environmental group Greenpeace

International for providing Cambodian "flags of convenience" to vessels

involved in illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing (IUU) in the Atlantic Ocean.

London-based Greenpeace International spokesman Simon Reddy says involvement of Cambodian-flagged

ships in unregulated fishing was highlighted on May 6 when the Cambodian-flagged

ship Benny 87 was observed trans-shipping 70 tons of big-eye tuna off the coast of

Angola in violation of regulations of the International Commission for the Conservation

of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).

"There are three other tuna longliners flying the flag of Cambodia on the ICCAT

list of vessels operating in contravention of ICCAT rules [and] there might be more

fishing outside rules and controls," Reddy told the Post. "Unless Cambodia

becomes a member of ICCAT and commits to enforce ICCAT rules upon vessels flying

its flag, no Cambodian fishing vessel should be authorized to fish tuna in the [Atlantic

Ocean and Mediterranean Sea]."

The Greenpeace disclosures come in the run-up to an October meeting of the United

Nations Food and Agriculture Organization designed to form an international action

plan to combat illegal fishing worldwide.

Officials of the Cambodian Ministry of Public Works and Transport have consistently

refused repeated Post requests for clarification of Cambodian ship registration procedures.

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