Jamaica, Colombia discussing repatriation of Jamaican fishermen
Jamaican and Colombian officials are discussing plans to repatriate a number of Jamaicans who were allegedly caught illegally fishing in Colombian waters.
Jamaica’s Minister of Foreign Affairs & Foreign Trade, Kamina Johnson Smith, told the Senate on Friday that the vessel was seized with 34 Jamaicans aboard.
The Minister said boat owners and fishers need to be mindful that countries in the region have changed their laws regarding how they deal with non-nationals caught fishing in their territorial waters.
In that regard, she said boat owners must obtain insurance and not simply rely on their government.
Senator Johnson Smith also revealed that the government has contributed to the repatriation of close to 5,000 Jamaicans over the last two years.
She said during the COVID-19 pandemic there was an increase in the need to secure the country’s nationals from across the globe.
In that regard, more than 3,000 were returned from ships across ten lines in seas and oceans around the world.