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Irish trawler 'given order to move on' by Royal Navy frigate

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  • Irish trawler 'given order to move on' by Royal Navy frigate

    The Department of Foreign Affairs has launched an investigation following a confrontation between a Royal Navy warship and an Irish-registered trawler off the Donegal coast.

    An Air Corps maritime patrol aircraft was dispatched and two Irish naval ships placed on standby after the skipper of the Killybegs-based fishing vessel, the Marliona, reported that a UK frigate ordered him to leave the area where he was fishing 60 miles off the Irish coast.

    It is understood that HMS Lancaster hailed the fishing vessel on Tuesday morning, informing the skipper they were commencing a joint operation with a submarine which would continue over the next three days.

    A probe was launched after the incident was reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Defence Forces. A maritime aircraft was sent to monitor the area where the UK warship was operating and two Irish naval vessels were redeployed to "show the flag".

    Breach

    The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) told the Irish Independent the incident was "not a fisheries matter" and redirected queries to the Navy. A Defence Forces spokesperson said they could not comment on "ongoing maritime defence and security operations".

    The Marliona has since resumed fishing in the area which is west off Tory Island.

    The incident, described last night as a "breach of Irish sovereignty", was reported to the authorities by the Killybegs Fisheries Organisation (KFO) which represents the trawler.

    "I was alerted immediately they had no right whatsoever to do this," said Sean O'Donoghue, chief executive of the KFO. "I reported it to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Defence but I haven't heard what happened yet.

    "I have been involved in the fishing industry for 40 years and have never seen this happen before. For the UK vessel to radio a trawler and tell him to get out of the area is totally unacceptable.

    "This is a sovereignty issue, this is a breach of Irish sovereignty," he added.


    https://www.independent.ie/irish-new...-39396055.html

  • #2
    Originally posted by Rocinante View Post
    The Department of Foreign Affairs has launched an investigation following a confrontation between a Royal Navy warship and an Irish-registered trawler off the Donegal coast.

    An Air Corps maritime patrol aircraft was dispatched and two Irish naval ships placed on standby after the skipper of the Killybegs-based fishing vessel, the Marliona, reported that a UK frigate ordered him to leave the area where he was fishing 60 miles off the Irish coast.

    It is understood that HMS Lancaster hailed the fishing vessel on Tuesday morning, informing the skipper they were commencing a joint operation with a submarine which would continue over the next three days.

    A probe was launched after the incident was reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Defence Forces. A maritime aircraft was sent to monitor the area where the UK warship was operating and two Irish naval vessels were redeployed to "show the flag".

    Breach

    The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) told the Irish Independent the incident was "not a fisheries matter" and redirected queries to the Navy. A Defence Forces spokesperson said they could not comment on "ongoing maritime defence and security operations".

    The Marliona has since resumed fishing in the area which is west off Tory Island.

    The incident, described last night as a "breach of Irish sovereignty", was reported to the authorities by the Killybegs Fisheries Organisation (KFO) which represents the trawler.

    "I was alerted immediately they had no right whatsoever to do this," said Sean O'Donoghue, chief executive of the KFO. "I reported it to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Defence but I haven't heard what happened yet.

    "I have been involved in the fishing industry for 40 years and have never seen this happen before. For the UK vessel to radio a trawler and tell him to get out of the area is totally unacceptable.

    "This is a sovereignty issue, this is a breach of Irish sovereignty," he added.


    https://www.independent.ie/irish-new...-39396055.html
    The UN Law of the Sea allows for Innocent Passage of surface warships but precludes launching aircraft in military role, it also allows for innocent transit of submarines and aircraft, in the former case the submarine should transit on the surface. In all cases they should not impede commercial undertakings in the economic zone including fishing. Did the RN ship just tell them as a matter of courtesy and safety OR did they say stop fishing and leave the area?
    Last edited by ancientmariner; 25 July 2020, 12:00.

    Comment


    • #3
      This is an interesting development, it would be good to know more on the actual position of the incident. There is a submarine exercise are north of Donegal, the Malin Sea Exercise Area, it starts at the 12nm limit, so does cross into our EEZ but not territorial waters.

      However standing orders for the guard ships is only to inform fishing vessels that an exercise is taking place and that a submarine is operating in the area. They do not include requesting a vessel to leave an area, that is reserved for range areas only of which the Malin Sea is not one. So we could have here a RN ship in international waters ordering an Irish vessel to leave, I am not aware of any legal authority which that could happen.

      And why has it taken so long for the press to get hold of this?
      If it had been a British vessel and an Irish naval vessel had done the same it would have been front page news on the Sun the next morning.

      Comment


      • #4
        The bigger question here is if they were monitoring a Russian sub, would we expect them not to warn the trawler and turn for home once they entered the EEZ?
        German 1: Private Schnutz, I have bad news for you.
        German 2: Private? I am a general!
        German 1: That is the bad news.

        Comment


        • #5
          Even if they were after a Russian sub, all they could do was inform, it still would not allow them to order the Marliona to leave the area.

          Comment


          • #6
            There has to be more to this.

            Where exactly where did it occur ?
            Was it a warning not to trawl in area due to submarine activity for safety reasons?
            Was it is U.K. territorial waters (I assume not)?
            Were they fishing in U.K. Waters?

            Comment


            • #7
              The VMS in Haulbowline know exactly where the Trawler was at all times if she was fishing. It was outside the 12 mile limit but safely within the EEZ, as reported. Still well within our AO though, and not someplace a foreign navy has any right to demand another vessel to depart from, regardless of flag.
              German 1: Private Schnutz, I have bad news for you.
              German 2: Private? I am a general!
              German 1: That is the bad news.

              Comment


              • #8
                I have overlaid the RN Submarine Exercise Area with the Irish EEZ limit in the area north of Malin Head.
                It is clear that a fishing vessel can be in both at the same time.

                Click image for larger version

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                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                  I have overlaid the RN Submarine Exercise Area with the Irish EEZ limit in the area north of Malin Head.
                  It is clear that a fishing vessel can be in both at the same time.

                  [ATTACH]8804[/ATTACH]
                  Leaving aside the incident in area V1( a) of the EEZ , it is an accident of historic circumstances that the RN Submarine exercise area remains in what is EEZ waters. The matter will be further complicated when the British leave the EU unless it is solved at EU level.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ancientmariner View Post
                    Leaving aside the incident in area V1( a) of the EEZ , it is an accident of historic circumstances that the RN Submarine exercise area remains in what is EEZ waters. The matter will be further complicated when the British leave the EU unless it is solved at EU level.
                    I don’t think (Military) submarine activity can Really called as “economic” activity

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DeV View Post
                      I don’t think (Military) submarine activity can Really called as “economic” activity
                      The issue would be the hindering of an Irish vessel undertaking lawful economic activity within the Irish/EU EEZ.

                      A quick glance to the west shows massive areas designated for military exercises, naturally in international waters but within our EEZ. Most of these exercise areas are historical but and as long as any non-Irish military activity does not hinder economic activity this should be fine. But it cannot be that a foreign navy can dictate when and where EU fishing vessels can operate within EU EEZ waters.

                      Hopefully this incident will be soon clear-up and that it will not occur again.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by na grohmiti View Post
                        The bigger question here is if they were monitoring a Russian sub, would we expect them not to warn the trawler and turn for home once they entered the EEZ?
                        It seems the Russian send a tug with each sub just in case it needs a tow!

                        https://www.forbes.com/sites/hisutto.../#3e7af0d05abe
                        https://www.forbes.com/sites/hisutto.../#309d7f5e64bb

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                          I have overlaid the RN Submarine Exercise Area with the Irish EEZ limit in the area north of Malin Head.
                          It is clear that a fishing vessel can be in both at the same time.

                          [ATTACH]8804[/ATTACH]
                          That's clearly not "west of Tory Island".
                          German 1: Private Schnutz, I have bad news for you.
                          German 2: Private? I am a general!
                          German 1: That is the bad news.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                            It seems the Russian send a tug with each sub just in case it needs a tow!

                            https://www.forbes.com/sites/hisutto.../#3e7af0d05abe
                            https://www.forbes.com/sites/hisutto.../#309d7f5e64bb
                            Indeed. A "tug".



                            Latest tugboat to enter service with Russia’s Black Sea Fleet on February 21
                            The new tugs have a lifting capacity of 200 tonnes and an operating range of 300 nautical miles

                            "On February 21, 2020 (Friday), a ceremony is due to take place to hoist the St. Andrew’s [Russian naval] flag and include the latest tug Sergei Balk in the structure of support vessels of the Black Sea Fleet’s auxiliary fleet," the press office said in a statement.

                            The tug Sergei Balk built for the Black Sea Fleet is the Project 23470 lead ship, the press office specified.

                            Project 23470 ships are designed to tow vessels in ice-covered and ice-free waters, assist them within port areas and in mooring, provide escort operations at sea, extinguish fires on floating platforms and at coastal facilities and fuel burning on the water surface, and also to refloat ships and vessels.

                            The new tugs have a lifting capacity of 200 tonnes and an operating range of 300 nautical miles and their sea endurance is 30 days.
                            https://tass.com/defense/1121867
                            Last edited by na grohmiti; 25 July 2020, 17:37.
                            German 1: Private Schnutz, I have bad news for you.
                            German 2: Private? I am a general!
                            German 1: That is the bad news.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by EUFighter View Post
                              This is an interesting development, it would be good to know more on the actual position of the incident. There is a submarine exercise are north of Donegal, the Malin Sea Exercise Area, it starts at the 12nm limit, so does cross into our EEZ but not territorial waters.

                              However standing orders for the guard ships is only to inform fishing vessels that an exercise is taking place and that a submarine is operating in the area. They do not include requesting a vessel to leave an area, that is reserved for range areas only of which the Malin Sea is not one. So we could have here a RN ship in international waters ordering an Irish vessel to leave, I am not aware of any legal authority which that could happen.

                              And why has it taken so long for the press to get hold of this?
                              If it had been a British vessel and an Irish naval vessel had done the same it would have been front page news on the Sun the next morning.
                              Or the skipper is being a bit "political" with what was communicated to him.

                              Comment

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