Vietnam investigates attack on boat by foreign warship off Hoang Sa

TN News

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Authorities in the central province of Quang Ngai have started investigating claims that a local fishing boat was attacked by a foreign warship two days before off the Hoang Sa (Paracel) Archipelago.

According to initial findings by Binh Chau Commune's authorities and Quang Ngai's border guard headquarters, they found a bullet in the boat owned by Dang Tam, 39.

Tam said in his report to the authorities that the unidentified ship attacked and took all his properties from the boat as it was approaching the archipelago's Xa Cu Island to shelter from big winds.

The boat was then carrying more than three tons of seafood, he said.

A report on Dan Viet (Vietnamese people), the news website of the Vietnam Farmers' Union, quoted the captain as saying that the ship's guards threatened the 11 fishermen onboard with guns and beat them.

"I estimate that I lost nearly VND500 million (US$24,100)," Tam said.

Bui Hong Van, chairman of Binh Chau Commune's Fishing Society, told Thanh Nien that the attack on Tam's boat soon after the Tet holiday has worried many local fishermen.

"Related agencies need to make timely interventions so fishermen can continue their job in waters under Vietnam's sovereignty," he said.

The case is being investigated further.

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