April 5, 2016 – Vietnam’s coast guard in a rare move has seized a Chinese vessel for allegedly intruding in its waters, state media reported Monday.
The Thanh Nien newspaper said that the vessel has been towed to the northern port city of Hai Phong, and that the ship, its captain and two sailors, all Chinese, are under the supervision of Vietnamese authorities.
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The vessel, disguised as a fishing boat, was carrying 100,000 liters of diesel oil and was intercepted by Vietnamese coast guard near Bach Long Vi island in the Gulf of Tonkin on Thursday, it said.
The captain told authorities the fuel was to be sold to Chinese fishing boats operating in the area, it said.
Hai Phong coast guard officials declined to comment Monday.
The newspaper said that in the last two weeks of March the coast guard had chased 110 Chinese fishing boats out of Vietnamese waters.
Vietnam’s coast guard often warns and chases Chinese fishing boats out of its waters but rarely seizes them.
Vietnamese fishermen complain they are harassed, attacked and have had their catches confiscated by Chinese authorities while they fishing in the South China Sea.