Subject: Info: EU drift net fishing ban block (fwd)

Michael Williamson (
Thu, 25 Apr 1996 09:51:12 -0400 (EDT)

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Date: Thu, 25 Apr 96 11:29:00 UTC 0000
Subject: EU drift net fishing ban block

EU drift net fishing ban blocked

    BRUSSELS, April 22 (Reuter) - The European Union failed on
Monday to make any progress towards banning the use of drift
nets for catching tuna, swordfish and salmon, EU officials said.
     Only Spain and Greece support a long-standing proposal by
the EU's executive European Commission to ban drift nets in the
northeast Atlantic, Mediterranean and Baltic by the end of 1997.
     "The proposal is totally blocked," said one official after
a meeting of EU fisheries ministers.
     EU Fisheries Commissioner Emma Bonino said she had no plans
to present a fresh proposal.
     Italy pledged that its fishermen in the Mediterranean will
obey current rules forbidding the use of drift nets longer than
2.5 kilometres (1.5 miles).
     The United States had warned that it could impose trade
sanctions this summer after the U.S. Court of International
Trade ruled recently that Italy was breaking international
     Some officials said Italian fishermen were using nets of up
to 20 km to catch swordfish.
     The European Commission said that a fisheries inspection
vessel, first chartered in 1995, will extend its patrols to the
Mediterranean this year.
     Environmental groups, such as Greenpeace, have campaigned
vigourously to abolish "curtains of death drift nets" which
they say kill thousands of dolphins and other marine mammals