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China vessel attacks Vietnamese boat, stealing assets off Hoang Sa: boat owner

Monday, August 18, 2014, 16:07 GMT+7

The owner of a fishing boat in the central Vietnamese province of Quang Ngai on Sunday reported to authorities that a Chinese vessel attacked his boat and took away properties on board while his watercraft was operating in Vietnamese waters last week.

>> Chinese ship rams, sinks Vietnamese fishing boat in Vietnam’s waters>> Chinese ship attacks Vietnamese fishing boat >> Chinese fishing boats violate Vietnam’s territorial waters>> China’s attack on fishing boat is inhuman: law experts The attack occurred at 8:00 am on August 15 when fishing boat QNg96697 TS with 13 fishermen aboard was catching fish off Cay Dua Island, part of Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago, the boat owner Le Khoi told Quang Ngai’s Ly Son Island border guard station yesterday. At that time, Chinese vessel #46101 came from nowhere, approached the fishing boat, and then launched two speedboats with 17 people on board to get close to the Vietnamese boat, Khoi said. These Chinese got on the fishing boat, threatened the crew members, and used hammers and cudgels to smash all the glass windows, destroy three basket boats, and cut off all the air hoses, according to the Vietnamese man. They took away a positioning machine, two Icoms, two fish finders, 3,000 liters of oil, and four metric tons of tuna, he said. At 2:00 pm the same day, another Vietnamese fishing boat of the central Vietnamese city of Da Nang found Khoi’s boat and Khoi had it send a brief report about the incident to the mainland. The boat owner and his crew members returned to Ly Son along with their boat on August 16. Nguyen Quoc Chinh, chairman of the Fisheries Association of An Hai Commune, where Khoi resides, said that the agency has reported the attack to the People’s Committee of Ly Son Island and other competent agencies for investigation. Many similar attacks occurred during the time when China illegally deployed the Haiyang Shiyou 981 oil rig along with more than 100 escorting ships to Vietnamese waters from May 1 to July 16 this year, the Vietnam Fisheries Resources Surveillance Department said. One of those cases happened off Hoang Sa’s Linh Con Island on May 7, when a Vietnamese fishing boat, QNg 96416, with 16 fishermen on board was assaulted by Chinese vessel #1241.

The foreign ship fired its water cannon at the local vessel and threw hammers, bolts, and bottles at it.

The Chinese vessel also fired tracers at the Vietnamese ship and used tools to destroy the local boat’s communication and navigation system.

Total damages were estimated at VND890 million (US$42,000). Another standoff was reported at 4:00 pm on May 26, when Chinese fishing boat #11209 crashed purposely into Vietnamese fishing ship DNa 90152, from the central city of Da Nang, with 10 fishermen on board.

The hard hit sank the local ship, and some Vietnamese fishing boats operating nearby managed to save all the 10 crew members.

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