Hawzah News Agency (Gaza, Palestine) - the secretary of the Gaza fishermen’s syndicate, said in a statement that Israeli forces targeted the Palestinian boats as they were fishing close to al-Sudaniyya area, north of Gaza City, on Saturday morning.
Nizar Ayyash added that Israeli marines then boarded a boat and arrested three fishermen, identified as Ahmed Kamel al-Anqah, Mahmoud Kamel al-Anqah and Mohammed Mahmoud al-Sultan. The three men are local residents of Beit Lahia city.
The Israeli naval forces did not take away the boat as it had been severely damaged by direct fire.
On May 24, Israeli forces arrested two Palestinian fishermen off the northern shores of the Gaza Strip.
About 4,000 fishermen work in Gaza, half of whom live below the poverty line.
Israel imposed a limit of three nautical miles on fishing in the waters off the Gaza shore until August 2014, when Palestinian fishermen were allowed to go out six miles.
Under a ceasefire agreement reached between Israelis and Palestinians following a deadly 50-day Israeli war in August 2014, Tel Aviv agreed to immediately expand the fishing zone off Gaza’s coast, allowing Palestinian fishermen to sail as far as six nautical miles off the shore.
Under the Oslo Accords, the fishing zone is supposed to extend to 20 nautical miles, but it has shrunk over the years as the Tel Aviv regime has imposed greater restrictions.
Over the past few years, Israeli forces have carried out more than a hundred attacks on Palestinian boats, arresting dozens of fishermen and confiscating several boats.
The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli blockade since June 2007. The blockade has caused a decline in the standard of living as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.