SINN Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has welcomed a vote in the European Parliament on a set of technical measures to protect fish stocks and marine ecosystems.
The Ireland South MEP was a key negotiator and a rapporteur for the legislative file.
Ms Ní Riada, who sits on the EU Fisheries Committee, also proposed a successful amendment which maintained the ban on electric pulse trawl fishing: ‘The fact of the matter regarding pulse fishing is that we simply don’t know the long-term effects it will have on stocks or the environment and the result of today’s vote was a reflection of that,’ she said.
‘It would be highly irresponsible at the best of times to allow any such practice to go ahead unfettered without first thoroughly researching it, but with Brexit posing the biggest threat to our fishing industry in history, we have to be more protective of Irish waters than ever.
‘My amendment ensured that local fishermen and organisations will have a much more significant say in what practices can and can’t be used in their area,’ she claimed.
‘There is nobody I trust more to ensure that Irish waters are kept safe and sustainable than Irish fishermen.
‘The practice simply has too many unknowns and as our fishermen face into the greatest crisis their industry has ever seen I am not minded to begin taking risks with their livelihoods.
‘I’m pleased that MEPs also voted in favour of a number of other amendments, including one calling on Member States, and by extension the Irish government, to make full use of funding to promote and safeguard fishermen.’