Indigenous groups defend fishing rights - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Indigenous groups defend fishing rights

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by Nick Delgado

Guam - Members of indigenous rights groups banned together in an effort to put pressure on senators to pass a bill that would establish rules and regulations for indigenous fishing. Josephine Jackson says they have already drafted rules that would allow people of Chamorro descent to fish in preserved areas that are currently off-limits.

Danny Jackson planted himself in the lobby of Senator Judi Guthertz's Office today and has vowed not to leave until the Guam Legislature promises to take up the bill.  "Yes, the preserve is good, but it's been 13 years since the preserve and they want to limit us with 3 seasonal fishes which is the tiao, the i'e' and manahak about the other fishes like the parrot fish and gadao and all the other fishes that we want to eat," he explained.

The legislation would allow for special rights for Chamorros to offshore fish and harvest resources, but the bill received opposition from the Aquatic and Wildlife Division of the Department of Agriculture.  Representatives said allowing fishing in marine preserves would hamper efforts to replenish fish stocks.

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