Indonesia releases 49 illegal Vietnamese fishermen

By Bui Hong Nhung   August 11, 2016 | 08:25 pm PT
The offenders were unaware of their crime after straying into foreign waters.

Indonesia handed over 49 illegal Vietnamese fishermen on August 10 at Soekarno Hatta International Airport, Jakarta, Vietnam News Agency reported.

The majority of fishermen come from the Mekong Delta provinces of Kien Giang and Vinh Long, and were captured over a 3-month period for fishing illegally in Indonesia’s waters.

Due to their limited geographical knowledge, many of them were unaware they had strayed into Indonesian waters. They told Vietnam News Agency that they were hired to catch fish offshore, but the captain decided where to go.


The Vietnamese Embassy in Jakarta sent home 17 Vietnamese fishermen from Indonesia in January, 2016. Photo by the Vietnam News Agency.

Indonesian authorities have arrested a growing number of Vietnamese fishermen over the last few years.

Nguyen Thanh Giang, a consular official at the Vietnamese embassy in Jakarta, said that more arrests have put pressure on Indonesia’s prisons and detention centers.

Giang added that the embassy has been working with local authorities to find a way to send the Vietnamese citizens home. In the future, they will introduce measures to prevent Vietnamese fishermen from fishing unlawfully in Indonesian waters.

On July 23, the Indonesian government also handed over 65 Vietnamese fishermen who were arrested while fishing illegally in the former’s waters in April and May this year.

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Indonesia hands over 65 arrested Vietnamese fishermen

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