More than 400 fishing families from four communities in Kampot province protested on Friday, demanding fisheries authorities and naval police prevent illegal fishing by Vietnamese fishermen in Cambodian waters.
Nak Sein, representative of the Troeuy Koh fishing community, said yesterday that members of the Troeuy Koh, Roluos, Kep Thmey and Tortoeng Thngai communities protested after they encountered Vietnamese fishing boats in a maritime area known as Phnom Doung.
“[They] encountered 10 Vietnamese fishing boats . . . using illegal fishing devices,” Sein said, and added that the Vietnamese fishermen escaped because their boats were faster.
Sein said locals had caught Vietnamese boats “very often” in the past and handed them to fishery authorities and naval police to take legal measures, but that the incursions kept happening and caused concerns over the loss of fish stocks.
Touch Poleak, director of anti-maritime crime for Kep and Kampot, admitted that Vietnamese fishing boats secretly entered Cambodian waters, but maintained they did not make it very far and sometimes claimed that they did not know they had crossed the boundary.