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Fishermen die at sea, on land

Two in boat mistaken for pirates, one killed in price protests

Police used tear gas and water cannon against demonstrators in Colombo
Police used tear gas and water cannon against demonstrators in Colombo
  • ucanews.com reporters, Kochi and Chilaw
  • Asia
  • February 16, 2012
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Two Indian fishermen were shot dead yesterday by an Italian ship’s crew, while a Sri Lankan fisherman was shot dead during demonstrations over fuel prices.

The captain of the Italian oil tanker Enrica Lexie said he mistook the fishermen for pirates when their boat came too close, 40 nautical miles from Kerala’s Kollam coast, said Southern Naval Command spokesman Roy Francis.

“The security wing fired at the fishermen and the captain alerted the coastguard headquarters about the firing. We have ordered the ship to anchor at Kochi port for detailed investigation and are also verifying the channel routes,” said Francis.

Police are out in force along the coast as tension was brewing in the area, officials said.

Meanwhile, in Sri Lanka one fisherman was killed and another eight injured when security personnel fired tear gas and shot at a massive protest march in Chilaw demanding the government reduce fuel prices yesterday.

There were nationwide protests over the fuel price hikes.

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