Last Updated on Friday, 5 February 2016, 8:01 by Denis Chabrol
According to a statement from the Ministry the nine residents of Orealla / Siparuta were arrested and taken into custody by Suriname’s military while they were fishing.
The men have been identified as Armaan Edwards, Genovese Davair, Alistair Peneux, George Edwards, Ackley Felix, Bob Peneux, Rodrick Herman, Edward Herman and Clifton Edwards.
The Ministry said the “men were engaged in subsistence fishing in the Corentyne River at the time. They were using hooks and lines and were in small boats and canoes. Subsistence fishing is part of our Indigenous Peoples’ culture which has been practiced for centuries. In the Amerindian Village of Orealla/Siparuta, subsistence fishing forms a part of the Village life and economy. The Corentyne River is the Village’s sole source of fresh fish.”
It was noted that the men were taken some thirty miles up-river to Apoera in Suriname where that country’s Military processed and later released them.
Some had to paddle for hours to get back home.
The matter was immediately reported to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and is engaging that ministry’s attention.
In the process Vice President Sydney Allicock was properly briefed on the issue and continues to engage the Toshao and remains in close contact with Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Carl Greenidge.