fishing off Arctic islands – Russia and Norway will discuss the fishing situation near Spitsbergen Island in the Svalbard archipelago administered by Norway, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said Monday.
The talks will be held during the visit of a Russian delegation led by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to Harstad, Norway November 9-10 for the 10th session of the Barents Euro-Arctic Council (BEAC).
“The session will include discussions between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Norwegian counterpart Jonas Gahr Store. There will be a focus on fishing in the Spitsbergen region, in particular on the need to prevent future repeats of recent incidents and on improving joint control procedures in the fishing industry in this region,” Kamynin said.
Two Russian fishing boats, the Kapitan Gorbachev and the Dmitry Pokramovich, were detained by the Norwegian Coast Guard October 24 and released October 28 after posting bail. The coast guard had detained the trawlers near Medvezhy Island in the Barents Sea after the boats entered a 12-mile exclusive fishing zone without permission October 24. Norwegian authorities accused the ships’ crews of unauthorized fish reloading in Norway’s territorial waters. These arrests came in the wake of a drama in mid-October involving the Russian Elektron trawler, which the Norwegians pursued across the Barents Sea for five days after accusing the Russian crew of violating Norwegian fishing regulations.
On November 1, the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office filed a criminal case against Valery Yarantsev, the captain of the Elektron, who is being investigated for illegal fishing and holding two Norwegian inspectors on board his vessel for four days