Vietnamese boat attacked, robbed by Chinese

7 February 2010
VietnamNet Bridge

VietNamNet Bridge - Fishermen in the central province of Quang Ngai have complained that a Chinese boat robbed and mistreated them as they were fishing off the Hoang Sa (Paracel) islands early this week, a local newswire reported Sunday.

According to the complaint submitted to Ly Son District’s Coast Guard Headquarters by fisherman Nguyen Chin, he and his crew of 15 were fishing in Vietnamese waters when a boat with a Chinese flag chased them on Tuesday.

When the Chinese boat caught up with Chin’s boat, around 20 people in army uniforms boarded the boat and pushed the Vietnamese fishermen to the prow before taking away over 500 kilograms of seafood.

“They also threw two drums of water to the sea, poured cold water on our rice container and asked us to go back to Vietnam’s coast,” Chin said, adding that they arrived home more than one day later.

A representative of the coast guard headquarters told the newswire they were verifying Chin’s allegations, and that the Quang Ngai coast guard had already reported the incident to provincial authorities.

Last year, more than a dozen boats in Quang Ngai were illegally stopped, robbed and mistreated in three attacks by the Chinese when they were fishing in Vietnamese waters, according to the news source.

In the meantime, the central province of Da Nang reported many Chinese boats continued fishing off Vietnam’s coast, local newspaper Tuoi Tre said on Saturday.

At least 130 boats were found illegally casting nets off the coast of Da Nang, Thua Thien-Hue, and Quang Tri provinces between last Saturday and Tuesday, it said.

The boats were chased off the waters, the Da Nang Coast Guard reported.

Early last month the coast guard headquarters had complained about the Chinese boats’ encroachment of Vietnamese waters, saying they detected the boats almost every day since late last year.

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