3 Oct 2019 09:23

Russian border guards have enough forces, hardware to detain N. Korean poachers - Russian Coast Guard chief

VLADIVOSTOK. Oct 3 (Interfax) - No additional forces are required at this point to continue a crackdown on poachers from North Korea, the head of the Coast Guard Department of the Border Guard Service of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), Adm. Gennady Medvedev, said.

"Forces are involved depending on a concrete situation. At this stage, we have enough forces to stop all violations of Russian legislation in the waters under the jurisdiction of the Russian Federation," Medvedev told Interfax upon being asked whether there is a need for additional forces to detain North Korean poachers.

All such violations are timely suppressed, he said.

"It [this problem] has been resolved. All violations [are being suppressed]. All transgressors are being detained. As regards media reports about vessels that entered [Russian waters] in order to shelter from a storm, they didn't commit any violations," Medvedev said.

According to earlier reports, several hundred foreign fishing vessels, including North Korea's, sheltered from typhoons off the coast of Russia's Primorye in August and September.

Russian border guards detained more than 570 North Korean poachers in less than a month. The FSB said on Wednesday that 64 North Korean poachers on four fishing vessels were detained in the Sea of Japan on October 1-2. Russian border guards had to use weapons during the detention. Five poachers were wounded.

The North Koreans were convoyed to the port of Nakhodka pending an inquiry and procedural decision.

Russian border guards detained 87 poachers from North Korea on 11 fishing vessels in Russia's exclusive economic zone in the Sea of Japan on September 28-30. Prohibited fishing equipment and more than 4,000 illegally caught squid were seized from them. On September 27, the Russian FSB's border guard department for the Primorye Territory reported the detention of another three fishing vessels and several motorboats with a combined crew of 262 people. On September 17, Russian border guards detained North Korean-flagged fishing vessels poaching in the Sea of Japan. During the detention, four FSB officers were injured and another one sustained a gunshot wound. One of the North Koreans died. More than 160 North Korean citizens were detained then.