My name is Moustapha Sarr and I'm a Senegalese artisanal fisherman. Ibra, my son, and I are writing to you just as we finish landing our catch of the day to show you our support in these hard times.
My name probably doesn’t ring a bell but my son and I have had the opportunity to meet the Arctic Sunrise in the Senegalese waters off Loumpoul, my village, on 7th April 2012.
You came to help Senegalese fishermen whose livelihoods were jeopardized by the activities of foreign pelagic trawlers plundering our marine resources.
Since that day, the name of your legendary ship and its crew will be forever etched in my mind.
It was about noon when you approached our little pirogue. We had spent six long hours trying to fill our nets, unsuccessfully. It must be mentioned that at that period, our waters were almost emptied of their resources. We, small-scale fishermen, were hanging on by our fingernails.
After presentations, we invited you to come on board to discuss the challenges facing the scarcity of fish, and the political promises made by Macky Sall to end the activities of pelagic trawlers in Senegal.
After hours of discussion, you continued your way towards Mauritanian waters, where other challenges awaited alongside the fishermen of our brother country. But before leaving, you were thoughtful enough to provide us water and biscuits.
I have watched the video of the interview over and over again and never miss an opportunity to share it with my friends and family. I will be eternally grateful for your contribution to the preservation of resources and defense of the small fishermen we are.
I was immensely surprised to learn of the disproportionate charges that the Russian authorities are holding against your friends. While my son’s voice and my own hardly represent a drop of water in the ocean, we would still like to make them heard.
The Arctic 30 are extremely brave women and men willing to leave their families and put their liberties in danger for a remarkable cause. Prison walls will not manage to silence you, because there is nothing more respectable than the battle you’re involved in.
I believe in you and your cause!
Moustapha Sarr, Senegalese Fisherman