A Chinese boat has been accused of preventing a Vietnamese fishing boat with engine failure from docking Monday in a reef in Truong Sa (Spratly), the archipelago that belongs to Vietnam.
Nguyen Thanh Chau of Quang Ngai Province was fishing 1.5 nautical miles off Gaven Reef when his boat engine broke down, Tuoi Tre newspaper quoted Duong Minh Thanh, owner of another boat fishing in the area, as saying.
Chau’s boat was carrying a 16-member crew, he said.
But a Chinese boat chased it away as it was attempting to dock at the reef for repairs.
Chau then called Thanh on the radio after failing to contact the mainland for rescue. Thanh is now looking for the boat.
Nguyen Quoc Chinh, chairman of a fishery organization in Chau’s hometown in Quang Ngai’s Ly Son District, said he is aware of the incident.
Chinh asked fishing boats in the vicinity to look for Chau’s boat but as of late Tuesday there was no word.
Vietnam has repeatedly rejected China’s unreasonable claims over a majority of the East Sea (also known as South China Sea), which includes Vietnam’s Truong Sa and Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelagos.