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Russia detains over 260 North Korean fishermen

Russia detains over 260 North Korean fishermen

File photo of two North Korean fishermen working on the Yalu river near the North Korean town of Sinuiju, opposite the Chinese border city of Dandong, in China's northeast Liaoning province on Sep 4, 2017. (Photo: AFP/Greg Baker)

MOSCOW: Russia on Friday (Sep 27) said it detained more than 260 North Korean fishermen off its Far Eastern coast for poaching.

The mass arrests came after Russia detained more than 160 North Korean fishermen in the Sea of Japan last week.

The FSB security service said that it stopped "three schooners and five motorboats with 262 North Koreans onboard, Russian news agencies reported.

The fishermen did not resist arrest and were brought to the Far Eastern port of Nakhodka, it said.

Around 30,000 squid were seized along with illegal fishing equipment from the North Koreans, the security service added.

Last week, the FSB said three Russian coastguards were injured in a clash with a North Korean fishing boat, which it accused of carrying out an "armed attack."

Coastal patrols, planes and special forces were used to detain two schooners and 11 motorboats that carried 161 North Koreans.

They were also brought to Nakhodka and the FSB later said that one of the North Koreans injured in the clash died from his wounds.

After the incident Moscow summoned the North Korean charge d'affaires, expressing "serious concern" over the clash.

The Russian coastguard in the Far East frequently detain North Korean fishermen, many of whom use rudimentary wooden boats. Some receive prison sentences.

There are frequent disputes over fishing rights in the Sea of Japan, which is bordered by Japan, Russia and North and South Korea.

In July, North Korea released a Russian fishing boat with a crew of 15 Russians and two South Koreans after it was detained for violating entry regulations.

Source: AFP/nr

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