Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Argentina sinks Chinese vessel, cites illegal fishing

Argentina sinks Chinese vessel, cites illegal fishing

Argentina's coast guard says it sank a Chinese boat that was fishing illegally off its coast.

Story highlights

  • Argentina's coast guard accuses a Chinese boat of trying to collide deliberately
  • The Chinese vessel was fishing illegally in its exclusive economic zone, Argentina says
  • The coast guard says it chased, opened fire on and eventually sank the vessel
Buenos Aires (CNN)Argentina's coast guard says it sank a Chinese fishing vessel that was fishing in a restricted area off the South American country's coast.
The Argentine Naval Prefecture chased and eventually sank the Lu Yan Yuan Yu 010 vessel after detecting it illegally fishing within the country's exclusive economic zone, officials said Tuesday.
    First, according to a statement from the coast guard, warning shots were fired. The Chinese vessel, Argentine authorities said, responded by turning off its lights and deliberately trying to crash.
    "On distinct occasions, the offending boat realized maneuvers aimed at colliding with the coast guard, putting not only its own crew at risk, but also the personnel of the coast guard," the statement said.
    That's why the coast guard opened fire, Argentine officials said.
    The vessel sank, and four people on board -- three crew members and the captain -- were rescued by Argentina's coast guard. Other crew members who'd been on the Chinese vessel boarded another fishing boat that had been traveling nearby, the coast guard said.
    Argentina's foreign ministry and the Chinese consulate have been notified, the coast guard said.
    Chinese officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
    Video posted on YouTube by the coast guard shows the Chinese boat listing to one side during the operation.
    The incident began Monday near Puerto Madryn, Argentina, the coast guard said, within the 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone off the country's coast.


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