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|Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang. Source: VOV|
According to Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang, Vietnam’s fishing ship QNg90617 TS has recently been sunk after being hit by a Chinese coast guard vessel in the waters belonging to Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago.
“Vietnam has repeatedly stated it has sufficient historical and legal evidence to prove its sovereignty over Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagoes in line with international law,” said the spokesperson.
“The above action by the Chinese ship violated Vietnam's sovereignty over the Paracel archipelago, causing property damage, threatening the safety, lives and legitimate interests of Vietnamese fishermen.
“It runs counter to the common awareness of the two countries’ leaders on humane treatment for fishermen and the agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of territorial border issues between the two countries.
“It also goes against the spirit of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), complicates the situation and is detrimental to the two countries’ relationship, as well as to maintaining peace, stability and cooperation in the East Sea.”
In a diplomatic note delivered to a representative of the Chinese Embassy in Hanoi on April 3, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam opposed the incident and requested that the Chinese side launch investigations and strictly deal with those involved in the incident.
Vietnam also asked China to provide Vietnamese fishermen with adequate compensation for the damage and ensure similar actions will not happen again in the future.
|A fishing vessel sunk by Chinese has been put on display outside the Hoang Sa Exhibition House in Son Tra District, Da Nang City. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong|
According to the Vietnam Fisheries Society, a Vietnamese fishing boat from the central province of Quang Ngai, was sunk after being hit by a Chinese ship.
China's ships hit and sank the fishing boat on Thursday morning before capturing and detaining the crew on a nearby island.
It was reported on April 3 the eight crew members aboard the sunken vessel have been rescued by Vietnamese vessels.
Two Vietnamese fishing boats QNg - 90045 TS and QNg - 90399 TS attempted to rescue the eight fishermen, but they were also detained with their ships on the island, Vietnam Fisheries Society wrote in a document issued to the Government Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other governmental institutions, quoting Quang Ngai’s Fisheries Society.
China released the eight fishermen and the two Vietnamese rescue boats on April 2 evening, the report added.
China seized the Paracel Islands from South Vietnam by force in 1974, and has since been illegally occupying them.
In 2012 it built the so-called "Sansha City" with Woody Island as its seat, and has since built a runway capable of handling military aircraft and other supporting structures.
The so-called city also extends to a number of reefs in Vietnam's Spratly (Truong Sa) Islands that China seized by force in 1988 as well as the Scarborough Shoal, which is claimed by the Philippines.
On May 1, 2014 China brought an oil rig, Haiyang Shiyou 981, and installed it in the waters off the Paracels, changing the status quo in the waters. Days after that, Chinese ships had chased after, fired water cannons at and rammed many Vietnamese fishing vessels near the islands.
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