A Chinese vessel rammed and sunk a Vietnamese fishing boat yesterday off the disputed waters off Vietnam’s coastline, according to the Vietnamese foreign ministry. Bloomberg reports:
“It sank,” ministry spokesman Le Hai Binh said of the Vietnamese vessel. “It was rammed by a Chinese boat.”
The 10 fishermen on board were rescued by other Vietnamese boats after the sinking yesterday around 17 nautical miles (19.5 miles) from a Chinese oil rig located near the contested Paracel Islands, Vietnam News reported.
Vietnamese ship DNa 90152 operating out of Danang was encircled by 40 Chinese fishing vessels in what Vietnam regards as its exclusive economic zone, the newspaper said.
This incident is the latest escalation in the China-Vietnam spat surrounding the placement of a Chinese oil rig in contested waters, which has seen violent anti-China riots that have in killed 20 people, a self-immolation, and mass-evacuations of Chinese workers from Vietnam.