Military-Ruled Myanmar has released 130 foreign fishermen who were jailed last month following their arrest for illegal fishing, a prison official told AFP on Tuesday.
The group, which was held in Yangon’s notorious Insein jail, was made up mostly of Indonesians and included 14 Filipinos, one Chinese and four Taiwanese nationals, the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
Taiwan’s foreign ministry confirmed on Monday that an unspecified fine had to be paid before its four nationals could leave, but the prison official did not reveal the conditions for the release of the other foreigners.
The group were arrested last month from 10 illegal fishing vessels and sent to Insein prison for poaching in Myanmar’s waters – the country’s largest arrest for illegal fishing in decades, officials said. They were later charged with violating immigration laws.
The official said the Indonesians were still waiting at the prison ‘as their embassy has to arrange air tickets for them’. Seven Myanmar nationals who were arrested with the group were also being released, he said.
An Indonesian embassy source confirmed that they were planning to send the 111 Indonesian fisherman back home soon.