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Italy prevents Libyan boat from intercepting fishing boats in international waters

A frigate of the Italian Navy intervened to rescue seven Italian fishing boats threatened by the arrival of a high-speed rubber boat from the coast of eastern Libya.

The Italian government Undersecretary for Defense, Stefania Boucharelli, said: “The Italian boats, which were engaged in fishing activities in international waters, were secured northward in the central Mediterranean.”

In a warning tone, “Boucharelli” vowed that, in the future, it would not be permissible to give the Libyan authorities the opportunity to intercept or threaten Italian fishing boats, which act in a legal manner in international waters, and the seizure of these boats will not be permitted, as what happened last September.

The Italian official added: “The atmosphere has become appropriate to formulate a binding understanding with the Libyan side regarding the development of a framework for international waters off the coast of Cyrenaica.”

The official indicated that reaching such an agreement is a result of the visit of Prime Minister Mario Draghi to Tripoli, which contributed to opening a space for dialogue with the recently elected executive authorities in Libya.

The official called on the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to start an expanded technical dialogue with other ministries to reach a formula for this understanding that will be presented to the Libyan side in this regard.

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