Both government and the opposition MPs in Parliament today opposed Indian fishermen poaching in Sri Lankan waters, and called for a speedy solution to the issue
State Minister of Economic Development and policy planning Niroshan Perera said Sri Lanka could not agree to the conditions laid out by Indian authorities.
UNP MP Mujibur Rahman said a delegation of Sri Lankan MPs should visit Tamil Nadu and discuss the matter with its Chief Minister Jayalalitha Jayaram.
Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan said the government should take up the issue with both the central government and Tamil Nadu.
Opposition MP Vasudeva Nanayakkara said Sri Lanka should make a case before the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.
MP Namal Rajapaksa said Sri Lanka fishermen who were harassed by the LTTE during the war were now being harassed by Indian fishermen.
Acting Minister of Fisheries Dilip Wedarachchi suggested setting up an All-party Committee to look into the issue, adding that Sri Lanka should seek the assistance of the European Union as well.
He said during discussions Indian fishermen had made six unreasonable suggestions, including a demand to be allowed to fish in Sri Lankan waters for 83 days out of a maximum possible 120 days. (Yohan Perera)