Indonesian Navy opens fire at Chinese fishing boat

Illustration: An Indonesian Navy ship

China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Sunday that Chinese fishing boats were harassed and shot at by several Indonesian navy vessels in the southwest of the South China Sea on June 17.

According to the Indonesian Navy, the vessel was detained while seven Chinese fishermen on board were arrested.

“While operating normally in China’s traditional fishing grounds in the southwest of the South China Sea on June 17. Chinese fishing boats were harassed and shot by several Indonesian navy vessels,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said.

“One Chinese fishing boat was damaged and one crew member shot injured, while another fishing boat and the seven people on board were detained by the Indonesian side.”

Chinese Coast Guard vessels were deployed to the site to protect Chinese fishing boats and fishermen and rescue and treat the injured.

This incident took place in waters where China and Indonesia have overlapping claims for maritime rights and interests.

This is the latest in a series of confrontations between the two sides. On March 19, 2016, a heavily armed Chinese patrol vessel was sent to free a Chinese fishing boat caught fishing illegally in the Natuna Sea in the Indonesian Exclusive Economic Zone.

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