Coast Guard hands over fishermen to officials

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Ramanathapuram, Tamil Nadu, Jun 3 (UNI) The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) today handed over the 19 Indian fishermen, arrested by the Sri Lankan authorities for trespassing into the Island nation's territorial waters recently, to the officials here.

A spokesperson of the ICG said the fishermen, hailing from Rameswaram, had set sail in four country boats on May 13.

The Sri Lankan Navy detained them on the next day for allegedly crossing the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) and poaching in the Lankan territorial waters.

On a request from the Indian government, the Lankan government released all the fishermen from Merigana de-Camp.

After completing the legal formalities, the Lankan Naval personnel handed over the Indian fishermen and the boats to the ICG at the IMBL this afternoon.

The ICG personnel handed them over to the state Fisheries Department officials.

UNI GSM SP RAI2151

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