Concerned fishermen hold dialogue with authorities

Tan Kai (fourth left) with maritime officials talking to the concerned fishermen.

KUCHING: Concerned fishermen here held a dialogue with local officials following the arrest of 14 of their colleagues by Indonesian authorities.

The fourteen were picked up in Tanjung Datu, 51 nautical miles from here. Tan Kai, a political secretary to the Chief Minister, was among those who attended the session with maritime officials in Bako yesterday morning.They were briefed by officials on the state’s maritime boundary.

The fishermen later said they would never enter illegally into Indonesian waters, and believed that their 14 colleagues must have done so accidentally.

Attempts were made to contact the Foreign Affairs Ministry, Malaysian Embassy in Jakarta and the Indonesian Consulate General here to appeal for their release.

Tan Kai said they would also seek help from the Malaysian navy to increase patrols to prevent such incidents in future.