US Coast Guard, Palau authorities detain vessel for IUU fishing

PSS President H.I. Remeliik II (Photo: Austal Australia)

The crew of the Palau Division of Marine Law Enforcement patrol boat PSS President H.I. Remeliik II coordinated with the US Coast Guard to apprehend a suspected illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing vessel off Helen Reef earlier this month.

The US Coast Guard despatched resources that included an Air Station Barbers Point HC-130 Hercules search plane and the cutter Myrtle Hazard from Sector Guam to support the Government of Palau to protect the latter country’s sovereignty and natural resources.

Earlier this month, Palau Rangers near Helen Reef reported witnessing a vessel illegally fishing nearby. In coordination with the US Coast Guard and the US Global Defense Reform Program contractor assigned to Palau’s Maritime Law Center, the crew of Remeliik II was despatched from Koror to apprehend the vessel.

The coast guard said the subsequent operation to apprehend the suspect vessel lasted nearly 20 hours.

The suspect vessel and its 28 crewmembers were later brought back to Koror and are at anchor while the investigation into their activities continues.

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