Monday, 4 April 2016

Decision to extend Gaza fishing zone to 9 miles takes effect


An Israeli decision to extend the fishing zone off some parts of the Gaza Strip coast to nine nautical miles took effect early Sunday morning, the Palestinian civil administration said.

Official sources told Ma’an that as of 2 a.m Sunday, Palestinian fishermen would be able to sail for nine nautical miles from Wadi Gaza southward. The fishing zone, the source added, would remain within six nautical miles north of Wadi Gaza.

The source highlighted that the Palestinian Authority’s civil administration committee reached an agreement with Israeli authorities to allow the entry of materials for Gazan fishermen into the besieged enclave. This material includes equipment to repair fishing boats.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed the extension of the fishing zone to nine nautical miles had gone into effect, adding that the decision was expected to add 400,000 shekels to the fishing industry in the Gaza Strip.

As part of Israel's blockade of the coastal enclave since 2007, Palestinian fishermen have been required to work within a limited "designated fishing zone" off the coast.

The exact limits of the zone are decided by the Israeli authorities and have historically fluctuated, most recently extended to six nautical miles from three, following a ceasefire agreement that ended Israel's 2014 offensive on the Palestinian territory. more

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