On Galapagos, fishing dispute spawns chaos


If you had to pinpoint when the fuse was lit for the bizarre outbreak of violence last month on the Galapagos Islands, Oct. 31 would be a pretty good choice. That’s when authorities declared that landings of spiny lobster had reached the 50-metric-ton limit, halfway into the four-month lobster season. So for this year, lobster diving had to stop. But angry fishermen demanded unrestricted lobstering until Dec. 31, and they staged violent protests on the islands of San Cristóbal, Santa Cruz and Isabela Nov. 13-16. Isabela bore the brunt. Demonstrators vandalized the offices and automobiles of the Charles Darwin Research Station and Galapagos National Park. They also damaged the island’s library and set fire to its municipal archives. Park and station personnel... [Log in to read more]

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