QUẢNG NAM — Vietnamese border guards, and other law enforcement forces of the country, always support fishermen when they go fishing legally in traditional Trường Sa (Spratly) and Hoàng Sa (Paracel) fisheries.
Colonel Văn Ngọc Quế of the central Quảng Nam Province’s Border Guard Command made this statement yesterday when visiting local fishermen on whom there had been an unjustified attacked by Chinese coast guards and they were forced to leave their traditional fishing ground on Việt Nam’s Hoàng Sa (Paracel) sea area earlier this week.
All the ten fishermen were on boat No QNa 91939TS from Núi Thành District’s Tam Quang Commune.
On behalf of the provincial Border Guard Command, the Núi Thành District’s People’s Committee and the Quảng Nam Fishery Society, Colonel Quế said that relevant authorities were working on cases of fishermen whose boats had been attacked and destroyed by Chinese forces, to have diplomatic reactions.
Quế said Vietnamese authorities would protect fishermen as well as their legitimate interests on traditional Trường Sa and Hoàng Sa fishing grounds.
According to Captain Võ Quang Thái, his boat was approached on Sunday by a Chinese coast guard ship when he and nine others were fishing as usual.
The captain recalled that there were 13 people from the ship, including two who could speak Vietnamese, who claimed to be Chinese police, when they approached the boat.
They confiscated all the fish they had caught and destroyed all their fishing tools as well as communications tools, Thái said.
The captain said he was told to sign a minute saying that he had violated Chinese waters but he refused.
“This is the traditional fishing ground of fishermen from Quảng Nam Province as well as fishermen from other central provinces,” Thái said.
The attacked boat came back on Monday.
Colonel Quế said that each fisherman would receive a support of VNĐ3 million (US$130). They promised to continue support with repairing and providing fishing tools for the fishermen.
Vietnamese fishing boat sunk in Hoàng Sa archipelago
In another report, five Vietnamese fishermen are drifting at sea after their fishing boat sank in a collision with an unnamed ship in Việt Nam’s Hoàng Sa sea area yesterday.
Trần Quang Minh, Director of the Nha Trang Radio, said that at 9:50am, his agency was informed by a fishing boat coded KH 98299-TS that another fishing boat KH 96640-TS of central Khánh Hòa Province was rammed and sunk by the unnamed ship while conducting fishing activities in the waters off the archipelago.
At that time, the fishermen shifted to woven bamboo basket boats and are drifting at sea.
The Việt Nam Maritime Communication and Electronics LLC notified the incident to the search and rescue agencies, and have asked boats operating around the site to support the distressed boat and its five fishermen. — VNS