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* Attacks on Indian fishermen by Sri Lankan authorities have significantly declined
Tue, Dec 18, 2012, 10:52 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Dec 18, New Delhi: The Indian government said Monday that after implementing mutually agreed arrangements the actual attacks by Sri Lankan authorities on the Indian fishermen entering Sri Lankan waters have significantly reduced.

In a written statement to the Lok Sabha Indian Defense Minister AK Antony said the Indian government considers safety, security and welfare of Indian fishermen most important and issues relating to incidents of attack on Indian fishermen has consistently been taken up with the Sri Lankan government through diplomatic channels.

"It has also been agreed to enhance cooperation to allow both countries to pursue their fishing activity in a safe, secure and sustainable manner," the statement said.

Indian government assured that it will continue to cooperate with the Sri Lankan government to ensure that fishermen on both sides can pursue their livelihood safely and securely.

The Defense Minister was replying to the Lok Sabha member ShriSivasmi Cin on the fishermen issue.

Indian fishermen constantly allege that they are attacked by the Sri Lankan Navy when they are fishing near the boundary line. The Navy says fishermen knowingly enter into the Sri Lankan waters to poach.

Sri Lankan Navy has repeatedly denied the claims of attacks by the Tamil Nadu fishermen saying that at no instance Indian parties had provided credible proof regarding any Sri Lanka Navy involvement.

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