Missing Vietnamese fisherman returns home after surviving Thai shooting incident

By Van Viet   July 14, 2016 | 07:01 am PT
Missing Vietnamese fisherman returns home after surviving Thai shooting incident
It is not clear how he managed to survive and got home, however.

To Hong Ngoc, a fisherman reported missing after Thailand’s Navy shot at some Vietnamese fishing boats in the former’s waters last week, has safely returned home, Le Hai Binh, Vietnam's foreign ministry spokesman, said at a regular press briefing Thursday.

Binh did not provide further details.

“The Vietnam Embassy in Thailand has informed Thai authorities about the case so that they could stop searching," Binh said. "The embassy is also working with relevant agencies to look into the incident and safeguard the fishermen’s legitimate rights.”

The Vietnamese foreign ministry said in a statement Monday that in the encounter on July 8, Thai naval forces opened fire on three Vietnamese fishing boats from Ben Tre with 18 crew members on board, leaving two fishermen injured and another missing. Two of the boats sank after colliding with Thai naval vessels.


Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Le Hai Binh said in a press briefing Thursday. Photo by VnExpress/Tung Dinh

The shooting prompted Vietnam to lodge protest against the use of force against its fishermen. Nguyen Hai Ngoc, the first secretary of the Vietnam Embassy in Thailand, had said earlier that firing on foreign fishing vessels over territorial disputes is against the law and international practices.

The latest shooting incident was the second time Thai warships opened fire on Vietnamese fishing vessels and injured fishermen. In September last year, Thai warships opened fire on a Vietnamese fishing boat, killing one crew member.

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