VietNamNet Bridge – On the afternoon of May 31, three Chinese military ships opened fire to threaten four fishing boats from Vietnam’s Phu Yen province, in the sea of Vietnam.
A fishing boat of Vietnam.
The Border-guard forces of Phu Yen province have asked for the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry’s intervention.
Colonel Nguyen Trong Huyen, Commander of Phu Yen Province’s Border-guard forces, said that according to fishermen’s report through the phone, while four fishing boats of fishermen from Phu Yen’s Tuy Hoa city were catching ocean tuna, only five miles to the southeast of the Da Dong Island in the Truong Sa (Spratly) Islands of Vietnam’s Khanh Hoa province, three Chinese naval ships approached.
At the distance of 40 meters from the Vietnamese ships, they fired to the water to threaten Vietnamese fishermen.
Captain Le Van Giup, of one of the four Phu Yen’s fishing boats, said that he quickly steered to avoid hitting the Chinese ships. According to Mr. Giup, the three Chinese naval ships, numbered 27, 28 and 989 were equipped with weapon.
According to the fishermen, the three Chinese ships closely followed Vietnamese fishing boats in the afternoon and night of May 31. Vietnamese ships had to move toward the shore to avoid threats from Chinese military ships.
In the morning of June 1, Captain Giup called the Phu Yen Border-guard forces to inform them of this case.
Colonel Nguyen Trong Huyen said that since early March 2011, it has become popular that many Chinese fishing ships illegally entered Vietnam’s waters and threatened Vietnamese fishing boats. “But this time, according to fishermen’s description, these were military ships because they are equipped with weapon,” he added.
Phu Yen Border-guard forces have told local fishing boats to avoid Chinese military ships, but continue their catching. “This is our traditional fishing ground which belongs to Vietnam’s sovereignty,” Huyen confirmed.
Colonel Huyen also said that he reported the case to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and asked for their intervention to protect fishermen and Vietnam’s sovereignty.
This is the latest move after the Binh Minh 02 ship case on May 26.