Colombo: Sri Lankan Fisheries Minister Rajitha Senaratne left for New Delhi on Tuesday to discuss the thorny issue of detention of fishermen from both countries, officials said.
Senaratne will meet with his Indian counterpart Sharad Pawar for crucial bilateral talks on poaching by fishermen of both countries in each other`s waters.
He is accompanied by six senior officials of the fisheries ministry. The Sri Lankan minister`s visit comes as both countries made reciprocal releases of fishermen held by them.
Colombo released 20 fishermen while a court in the eastern port of Trincomalee ordered the release of 32 more. India had also freed several Sri Lankan fishermen.
Both countries have been holding over 200 of each other`s fishermen leading up to this week`s talks.
The two ministers are expected to discuss long-term measures that can be mutually agreed upon with a view to preventing fishermen from Sri Lanka and India engaging in unlawful fishing in each other`s waters, and implementing the ban on the use of illegal fishing methods, the ministry said.