HA NOI (VNS)— The Viet Nam National Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) yesterday confirmed an incident involving one of its ships and Chinese vessels.
Answering questions from the media, Deputy Head of PetroVietnam's Search and Exploration Division Pham Viet Dung said that the incident happened at 4:05am last Friday when the Binh Minh 02 was attempting to carry out a seismic survey on the Vietnamese continental shelf around the Bac Bo (Tonkin) Gulf.
The ship reportedly encountered a number of Chinese fishing boats and sent warning signals asking them to leave the area the ship was working in. Two Chinese boats numbered 16025 and 16028 ran up behind Binh Minh 02, cutting the Vietnamese ship's seismic survey cables.
Following the incident, PetroVietnam immediately ordered relevant departments and the ship's crew to rectify the problem. By 2pm on Saturday, all the cables had been repaired and the ship had resumed work.
Dung objected to the action and requested relevant agencies to ask Chinese citizens to respect Viet Nam's sovereignty and not interfere with the operations of Vietnamese ships, including seismic survey ships belonging to PetroVietnam.
A similar incident happened in May last year when three Chinese ships cut the cables of Binh Minh 02 while it was carrying out an exploratory mission. — VNS