West African fishing communities say “no” to monster-boats

Press release - September 9, 2013
Nouakchott, September 9th, 2013 - Fishermen's organizations and civil society have supported that predatory boats are not welcome in West African waters this Sunday in Nouakchott.

This statement comes in response to the Dutch monster boat, Annelies Ilena (formerly Atlantic Dawn), leaving Mauritanian waters one week earlier with more than 7000 tons of pelagic fish in its holds.

"The presence of trawlers such as Annelies Ilena in West African waters poses a serious threat to these species, which already find themselves overexploited. It is of the utmost urgency that West African governments bear responsibility for this and mobilize in order to ban these monsters from their waters. ", insisted Ahmed Diamé, Oceans Campaigner for Greenpeace Africa.

"Small pelagic fish play a vital role in the economy and food security of the West African states. Millions of people depend on these stocks for their daily animal protein intake and for their jobs," he added.

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), most small pelagic stocks are in a status of overexploitation throughout the region. Giant trawlers aggravate the threats already posed to these species by small-scale fishing.

"We can no longer accept that these gigantic industrial ships plunder our oceans at the expense of lives, economies and the future of West Africans. It is time for this to end now” concluded Diamé.

Contacts :

Ahmed DIAME, Oceans campaigner Greenpeace Africa Email: ; Telephone: +221773328993

Bakary Coulibaly, communications officer Oceans campaign, Greenpeace Africa, Email: ; Telephone: +221773336265