The Sri Lankan Navy on Tuesday arrested at least four Indian fishermen and seized their trawler off the coast of northern Jaffna peninsula ahead of ministerial- level bilateral talks in New Delhi tomorrow to solve the sensitive issue.
The Lankan navy said the fishermen were arrested on charges of fishing in Sri Lankan territorial waters off the coast of Delft islet early this morning.
The arrested Indian fishermen were handed over to the fisheries inspectorate at Karaingar, Jaffna, by Sri Lankan naval coast guard vessel Elara, the navy added.
Fishermen's Association President Sagayam in Rameswaram confirmed the reports of arrest.
The arrests have come ahead of the scheduled talks tomorrow between Indian and Sri Lanka fishermen to solve the recurring dispute over the arrest of fishermen. A 10-member Lankan fishing association delegation will arrive in India for the talks.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will meet her Lankan counterpart Mangala Samaraweera and Lankan Fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera. These talks are to be preceded by talks between the fishermen associations of the two countries.
(With PTI inputs)