A court in Puntland has handed down various sentences to Yemeni fishing boats and their crew that were seized off the coast of Puntland.
Of the three boats seized and their crew, two were fined after being found guilty of illegal fishing, while the other was acquitted and released.
The two convicted boats, Al-Dayaa and Al-Lascaa, were fined $ 9,000 and $ 8,000 respectively.
The fish on the two convicted boats were seized by Puntland, as they were caught fishing illegally, according to the court.
Somali waters have high fisheries production potential, but the sustainability of those fisheries is compromised by the presence of foreign fishing vessels, many of them fishing illegally.
The Somali domestic fishing sector is small and relatively nascent, but foreign vessels have fished in Somali waters for at least seven decades.
Some foreign vessels and their crew have been a direct, physical threat to Somali artisanal fishers.
Many foreign vessels directly compete for fish, reducing fish populations and destroying marine habitat through bottom trawling
BY OSMAN HUSSEIN ALI