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Leading News from Sri Lanka::

* Next round of fishermen level talks between Sri Lanka and India in Colombo next month
Tue, Apr 15, 2014, 12:14 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Apr 14, Chennai: The Tamil Nadu Government Monday agreed to Sri Lanka's proposal to hold the next round of fishermen level talks between the fishermen of the two sides on 12th and 13th of May, 2014 in Colombo.

State Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries Secretary S Vijayakumar has informed the Tamil Nadu government's decision to the Central Indian government in a communique to Suchitra Durai, Joint Secretary of India's External Affairs Ministry in New Delhi.

"I request you to kindly convey to the Sri Lankan side that the meeting of the fishermen can be hosted in Colombo on May 12 and 13," he wrote.

Fishermen, who participated in the earlier talks held on January 27 in Chennai, including a delegate from Puducherry, will participate in the second round as well.

In addition, the delegation will be accompanied by the Secretary to Government, Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries Department, Director of Fisheries, and Additional Director of Fisheries.

The nod from Tamil Nadu government to proceed with the talks on the nagging issue of fishing rights in the disputed territory between the two countries came a day after the Union Shipping Minister G.K. Vasan blamed the Tamil Nadu government for "sabotaging" the talks between the two sides.

After the successful talks at the first round, the Tamil Nadu State government fixed March 25th date for the second round of talks, which were originally scheduled to be held on March 13th in Colombo.

However, the talks got postponed since Sri Lanka did not release all the Indian fishermen and their boats detained in Sri Lanka before the talks as the Tamil Nadu government demanded.

Sri Lanka has released 98 fishermen of Tamil Nadu and handed over their 23 boats All the Indian fishermen arrested have also been repatriated.

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