HELSINKI, October 25 (RIA Novosti) - The Russian Embassy in Norway confirmed Tuesday that Russian fishing boats had been detained in Norwegian territorial waters. Embassy spokesman Alexander Shadsky said the Embassy did not know when the boats would be released. "Everything depends on the Norwegian authorities," he said. "We are contacting the Norwegian Foreign Ministry and waiting for developments."
On Monday, Norwegian coast guards detained the fishing boat Kapitan Gorbachev and the transport vessel Dmitry Pokramovich near the island of Medvezhy in the Barents Sea after the boats had entered a 12-mile exclusion zone without permission.
The latest arrests come in the wake of a drama last week with another trawler, the Elektron, which the Norwegians pursued across the Barents Sea for five days after accusing the Russian crew of violating Norwegian fishing regulations.
The head of the Northern Fishery Union Gennady Stepakhno called the detention of the Russian boats "a gross violation of international laws." "Our fishermen have worked near the island of Medvezhy before and no one arrested them there," he said. "The Norwegians are gradually toughening rules of the game."
A senior official from the Norwegian Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs said both Russia and Norway had failed to properly combat poaching.