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Security at sea will be beefed up: Antony


Kollam (Kerala) : Defence Minister A.K. Antony Sunday assured that all efforts would be made to beef up security on the high seas for Indians.

Antony was talking to reporters after visiting the home of Gelastine, one of the two fisherman shot dead by Italian security officials in the deep sea off Alappuzha Feb 15.

“The issue of pirates in the deep sea still continues even as 18 countries have cooperated to root out this menace. From our part, we have ensured that the navy, coast guard and coastal police will be strengthened to see that adequate security is provided in the deep seas,” he said.

Earlier, Antony told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram that the Kerala government is doing everything possible in the ongoing investigation into the shooting of two Indian fishermen by guards aboard the Italian Tanker “Enrica Lexie”.

“The Kerala government is going by the rule book and the centre is fully supporting the moves of the Kerala government. In this case the Indian law will be applicable,” said Antony.

Early Sunday, after a 12-hour search on the Italian ship, the Kerala Police team returned to land with four suitcases that contained eight guns, an officer said.

Two separate teams of Indian and Italian experts Saturday began the search of the Italian ship to examine the weapons used by the security guards.

The first team comprised Kerala Police officials, forensic and ballistic experts and the second team consisted of Italian officials, including two army majors from Italy who reached here early Saturday.

The boxes retrieved during the search would be kept at a police station here Sunday, and would be taken to the Kollam court Monday for a detailed forensic examination.