A Chinese fishing ship was seized by Indonesian authorities suspected of illegal fishing, after it was found carrying six flags of different countries, according to the country’s Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Susi Pudjiastuti, as cited by local media.
In particular, when seized in Indonesian eastern waters, the vessel, identified as ‘Fu Yuan Yu 831’, was carrying the Timor-Leste flag, but investigation onboard revealed also flags of China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore, The Jakarta Post reported.
As explained, the particular ship was suspected following this practice to avoid fishing regulators. The authorities also seized 35 tons of fish, including tiger sharks, a protected species, according to Ms. Pudjiastuti.
The 21 crew members onboard were also arrested.
The ship was suspected of operating in the area since August. It was taken to Kupang Port, where it will be further investigated.
Illegal fishing is a key area of concern in the country, as this year alone, almost 130 foreign boats were seized for fishing without permission in Indonesian waters.