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Alarm over discovery of hundreds of Chinese fishing vessels near Galápagos Islands

Exposing the Big Game

The fleet, found just outside a protected zone, raises the prospect of damage to the marine ecosystemSeascape: the state of our oceans is supported byAbout this content

Dan Collynsin Lima@yachay_dc

Mon 27 Jul 202020.01EDTFirst published on Mon 27 Jul 202019.42EDT

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Fishing and tourist boats are anchored in the bay of San Cristobal, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador.
Fishing and tourist boats are anchored in the bay of San Cristóbal, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. Photograph: Adrian Vasquez/AP

Ecuador has sounded the alarm after its navy discovered a huge fishing fleet of mostly Chinese-flagged vessels some 200 miles from theGalápagos Islands, the archipelago which inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.

About 260 ships are currently in international waters just outside a 188-mile wide exclusive economic zone around the island, but their presence has already raised the prospect of serious damage to the delicate marine ecosystem, said a former environment minister, Yolanda Kakabadse.

“This fleet’s size and aggressiveness against marine species is…

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