In June 2020 , a Chinese Coast Guard patrol vessel rammed and looted a Vietnamese fishing boat in the Paracel Islands. Acts of aggression like these from China have hindered the livelihoods of fishermen in the South China Sea, who struggle to defend their rights to fish in one of the most contested regions in the world.
Armed Chinese ships escorting Chinese fishing fleets have been known to chase, use water cannons on, capture or even set fire to fishing vessels from the Philippines and Vietnam found in waters that Beijing lays claims to within its “nine-dash-line” boundary. These include the Paracel Islands, Spratly Islands, the Macclesfield Bank and the Scarborough Shoal.
The last falls within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the Philippines, and in 2016 the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague ruled that China’s claim of “historical rights” to the shoal had no legal basis, and that it had violated the Philippines’ “traditional fishing rights”.
But China has ignored the ruling and its fishing fleets have continued to muscle out Filipino fishermen, who are enraged that the Duterte administration isn’t taking a stance on this matter.
WATCH the full #Insight episode: https://cna.asia/2V6HRao
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