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Vietnam displays fishing vessel sunk by Chinese in Paracel

By Nguyen Dong   May 29, 2019 | 06:50 am PT
A damaged fishing vessel has been put on display in Vietnam to remind people of a Chinese attack on fishermen.
DNa 90152TS fishing vessel on display. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong

DNa 90152TS fishing vessel on display. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong

DNa 90152TS, a boat that used to fish around Hoang Sa (Paracel) Islands, now stands outside the Hoang Sa Exhibition House in Son Tra District, Da Nang City.

It was gifted by its owner, Huynh Thi Nhu Hoa, a local.

On its left side the wooden hull is broken, the result of being rammed and sunk by a Chinese ship in May 2014.

The only part of the boat that has been replaced is the national flag.

The broken part of DNa 90152TS as hit by a Chinese vessel. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong

The damage caused to DNa 90152TS after being hit by a Chinese vessel. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong

The Chinese brought an oil rig, Haiyang Shiyou 981, and anchored it off Hoang Sa on May 1, 2014.

With the arrival of the rig, which Vietnam repeatedly demanded China should remove, saying it violates Vietnam’s sovereignty and international laws, Chinese ships turned the waters around Hoang Sa into their backyard, chasing away and even attacking Vietnamese vessels.

DNa 90152TS was rammed 17 nautical miles off the rig. The Chinese even prevented other Vietnamese fishing vessels from going to the rescue of its crew, but luckily the 10 men on board managed to save themselves.

The vessel was badly damaged but China denied the attack happened, claiming the boat sank after ramming a Chinese ship.

The Vietnamese media released a video clip shot by the fishermen showing the Chinese ship ramming the Vietnamese boat, and China remained silent.

Hoa, the vessel's owner, went to a local lawyer, determined to take the Chinese ship to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in Hamburg, Germany.

Lawyer Do Phap took up the case and offered to work free of charge.

But it has gone nowhere with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs for years ignoring all demands from Vietnamese fishermen.

The Hoang Sa Exhibition House had in the past rejected offers from Hoa and others like her to put the corpses of their boats on display, saying it could not allocate space for such items.

But now it has said it will make adjustments in the area where it is placing the boat to make it easier for visitors to watch the item.

One of those who joined in making requests for the boat to be displayed, Dang Cong Ngu, former chairman of Hoang Sa District, said: "The ship is now a museum item to remind later generations that Hoang Sa has been illegally occupied."

Below is the video showing the Chinese ship ramming Vietnamese fishing boat DNa 90152TS on May 26, 2014.

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