||Issue No. 288||04 November 2005|
Interview: Public Defender
Legal: Craig's Story
Unions: Wrong Way, Go Back
Politics: Queue Jumping
History: Iron Heel
Economics: Waging War
International: Under Pressure
Poetry: Billy Negotiates An AWA
Review: A Pertinent Proposition
The Locker Room
Truth in Advertising
What a Woman!
It's Not Pretty
Shame Ships Filch Fish
The report says human rights are being thrown overboard, citing the suspicious fire last month aboard the Simiez in the Uruguyuan port of Montevideo, in which 11 Chinese crew members died.
Abuses cited in the report include forced labour and the abandonment of crews in foreign ports.
General Secretary of the International Transport Federation, David Cockroft, said that a clear violation of human rights was taking place on illegal fishing vessels. He said abuse of crews and appalling safety standards were exacerbated by the sometimes harsh and dangerous weather conditions faced by fishing vessels.
"Not only is flag of convenience fishing a threat to fisheries and the marine environment, but there is a deadly human cost," says Cockroft. "In many cases the vessels operate with an unprotected workforce who can be beaten, starved, and worked without pay - all out of sight in one of the world's most dangerous industries."
The report found the illegal fishing business is worth around US$1.2 billion, yet it costs only a few hundred dollars to buy a flag of convenience registration for a vessel.
Approximately 15 per cent of the world's large-scale fishing fleet is either flying flags of convenience or the identity of the flag is unknown.
The federal government has backed flag of convenience shipping, through single voyage permits, as a way of slashing maritime labour costs.
The Changing Nature of High Seas Fishing: How Flags of Convenience provide cover for illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing report was sponsored by the Australian Government, the global transport union body, the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) and WWF, the global conservation organisation.
To view the report go to http://www.itfglobal.or
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