China sends armored fishing boats to ram Vietnamese ships near illegal rig

By Mai Thanh Hai, Thanh Nien News

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Photo by Mai Thanh Hai
China dispatched tug boats and armored fishing boats in the last few days to ram  Vietnamese Coast Guard and Fisheries Resources Surveillance vessels posted around a giant Chinese oil rig illegally deployed into Vietnamese territorial waters.
The triple-layered Chinese armada has amassed around the US$1-billion oil rig  inside Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf since early this month.
The innermost layer of the Chinese fleet consists of warships belonging to the Chinese Navy. The middle layer consists of large Chinese marine patrol and surveillance ships. The outer layer consists of medium-sized (between 500 and 2,500 tons) vessels belonging to Chinese marine patrol and surveillance forces.
Along with tug boats and armored fishing boats positioned around the rig, two Chinese aircraft have maintained patrols over Vietnamese law enforcement ships which remain determined to approach the rig and protect local fishing boats.

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