Another three Chinese fishing trawlers escorted into a SA port
A call for assistance to the SA Navy by the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) to assist in monitoring and inspecting Chinese trawlers thought to be fishing illegally in South African waters is paying dividends. The Navy’s supply and replenishment vessel SAS Drakensberg (A301) was late last week tasked to become the second naval vessel responding to the DAFF call. The Valour Class frigate SAS Amatola (F145) was the first warship deployed following the DAFF appeal just on two weeks ago. Drakensberg earlier today escorted three Chinese fishing trawlers into East London harbour. Reports have it two fishing vessels were spotted on Friday and a decision was taken to approach them and halt their activities late on Sunday. A third, similar, vessel was observed during the approach and also taken under escort. Last week another Chinese fishing vessel was escorted into Cape Town harbour by the DAFF vessel Victoria Mxenge. Clarifying the Navy’s involvement in the operation, Captain Zamo Sithole said the maritime arm of the SA National Defence Force does not have any jurisdiction over illegal fishing in South Africa’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).