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Western Indian Ocean: Migrant smuggling and illegal fishing on the rise

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The United Nations Contact Group on Piracy in the Western Indian Ocean has been advised to pay attention to increased cases of migrant smuggling and illegal fishing, as it expands its focus following a decrease in piracy activity in the region.

According to the East African, with 1,497 days passing since the last reported piracy incident in the region, security experts are warning that the vice has been suppressed but it isn’t gone forever. It is highly important that they remain vigilant while addressing the root cause of piracy, which has been identified as poverty.

As East African reports, Sharon Dimanche, Kenya Chief of Mission, The International Organisation for Migration (IOM), noted that economic hardships, political instability and effects of climate change are fueling migrant smuggling in the region.

"The proceeds of these activities have been linked to wider criminal networks allowing them to gain access to a variety of illicit resources in both the marine and land criminal arena", said Sharon Dimanche.

Find out more: IUU Fishing, Piracy and Maritime Security

Source: Safety4Sea