The Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has demanded that China investigate the assault and robbery cases committed recently by Chinese forces against Vietnamese fishermen in the East Sea.
The ministry’s spokesman Le Hai Binh made the statement at a press conference in Hanoi on Tuesday in reply to reporters’ questions about Vietnam’s responses to the three attacks by Chinese vessels on Vietnamese fishing boats last month.
“The acts seriously violated Vietnam’s sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction in the East Sea, running counter to international law and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea,” Binh said.
They also went against the Vietnam-China agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues, and the common perception of both countries’ leaders on humane treatment of fishermen, he stressed.
Vietnam also demands that China prevent such acts from recurring in the future and pay adequate compensation for affected fishermen, the spokesman said.
On August 1 and 14, a number of Chinese ships constrained and robbed two Vietnamese fishing boats from the central province of Quang Ngai , the QNg 96416 TS and QNg 96674 TS, while the local vessels were fishing off Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago in the East Sea.
A more serious case happened on August 15 when another Quang Ngai fishing vessel, the QNg 96697 TS, was blocked by two Chinese powerboats, both coded 207, while it was operating off the same archipelago, the ministry said.
The crewmembers of the Chinese vessels then got on the local boat, beat Vietnamese fishermen, destroyed equipment, and took away some property, it added.
Spokesman Binh also said the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry met with Chinese embassy representatives in Hanoi on Tuesday to hand over a diplomatic note of protest over the above acts.