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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 November 2005, 14:10 GMT
Aceh aid 'may cause over-fishing'
By Rachel Harvey
BBC News, Jakarta

Two Indonesian refugees walk down a road covered with debris leftover from the tsunami in the west coast town of Leupung, Aceh, 09 January 2005.
Many of Aceh's own fishing boats were destroyed in the tsunami
The number of boats being provided to tsunami survivors in Indonesia's Aceh province could lead to problems of over-fishing, relief workers warn.

The waters off Aceh are rich fishing grounds, particularly for tuna which can fetch a high market price abroad.

But the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies says if local fleets become too big, fish stocks could be put at risk.

Last December's tsunami destroyed a whole swathe of Aceh's coastline.

More than 130,000 people died and the livelihoods of those who survived were left in ruins.

Hundreds of local and international aid organisations moved in to help, many of them providing new boats to get fishermen back to sea.

But now the Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies is suggesting that that policy may need rethinking.

The federation says the number of boats is increasing rapidly and because they are all of a similar small size they are all fishing in the same waters close to shore.

A member of a local Acehnese fishermen's organisation contacted by the BBC agreed that a greater variety of boats was needed along with better co-ordination between aid organisations.

For example, he said, a community with 70 fishermen may be given 100 boats, but another village nearby gets none.


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