Chinese coast guard ship attacks Vietnamese fishermen

By Kim Thuy   March 10, 2016 | 03:15 am PT
A Vietnamese fishing boat carrying 10 crew members was attacked by a Chinese coast guard ship on March 6 whilst it was operating in its traditional fishing grounds off the Hoang Sa (Paracel) Archipelago.

Vo Quang Thai, the owner of the boat, said that 11 armed men from the Chinese ship No. 46101 approached his vessel in speedboats while the others aimed guns at the boat.

They stole one ton of fish, food and fuel from the boat, and destroyed all communications and fishing equipment, Thai said.


Vo Quang Thai (left) and nine crew members were attacked and robbed by a Chinese coast guard ship on March 6 - Photo by VnExpress

Two of the Chinese men could speak Vietnamese and tried to force Thai to sign a document saying that his boat had violated Chinese waters, but he refused.

“If you do not leave Hoang Sa immediately, we will destroy your boat,” one man threatened the crew in Vietnamese.

The estimated loss was VND300 million ($13,500).

The crew made it back to their home port in Quang Nam province safely and unscathed.

Each of the crew members will receive VND3 million from the province as well as fishing equipment and financial support to repair the boat.

According to Quang Nam authorities, Vo Quang Thai and other fishermen from the province have been fishing in the Hoang Sa Archipelago for years.

Thai was honored in 2014 for his determination to continue fishing in Vietnamese waters despite Chinese intimidation and the installation of its giant oil rig HD 981.

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