THE environmental organisation Greenpeace yesterday complained that illegal fishing of red tuna is in excess of 12'000 tonnes and that tuna farms are endangering the population of this species in the Mediterranean. According to a Greenpeace report, made public yesterday, the red tuna population in the Mediterranean is in danger of extinction “because of pirate fishing and totally inadequate management”. It can only recover if “urgent measures are taken to improve and enforce the existing law and to protect their breeding grounds as part of a plan to recover the population” they said. “The commercial extinction of red tuna in the Mediterranean is just around the corner”, confirmed Sebastian Losada, head of the ocean campaign for Greenpeace. The red tuna population is being killed off by “pirate fishing fleets to satisfy the expansion of tuna farming, which receives large subsidies from the European Union and Mediterranean countries”, complained Losada, for whom “it is outrageous that the majority of the guilty parties are fishing fleets from countries in the region”. The Greenpeace report shows that the tuna caught illegally is more than 12'000 tonnes (37 percent) over the legal maximum of 32'000 tonnes permitted by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna.