South China Sea War: Shots Fired By Indonesian Navy ‘Notice To The World’
The tension in the highly disputed territory over the South China Sea has escalated to an unprecedented level between China and the Philippines. But lately, Indonesia has become more aggressive, too, as it starts to make its position known in the region.Advertisement
Recently, the Indonesian navy seized at least two Chinese fishing vessels. On Friday, Indonesian navy fired at and seized a Chinese fishing vessel after it allegedly entered Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and stole fishes from its seas, ABC News reported.
The detained Chinese vessel Gui Bei Yu was seized near Indonesia’s Natuna Island, northwest of Borneo. Before the vessel’s crew was arrested, the Indonesian navy fired shots at them for ignoring the warnings from Indonesian authorities.
Major Budi Amin, spokesperson for western fleet command of Indonesian navy, told the Associated Press via ABC News that the responding team was left with no choice but to fire at the Chinese vessel after it ignored warnings. Eight crew members were arrested, and no one was hurt from both sides.
In the same report, Indonesia’s navy commander said that the seizure of the Chinese vessel is Indonesia’s “notice to the world,” an indication that the country will respond to territorial encroachment accordingly. The commander added that any violation to the country’s jurisdiction will be dealt with accordingly.
Amid reports of Chinese fishermen being arrested in its neighbors’ territories, the Chinese government is reportedly training local fishermen for militia tactics as they sail through disputed waters, Reuters reported.
According to an advisor to the Hainan government who requested anonymity, China’s move to train its fishermen with militia skills came amid several instances of Chinese vessel seizures abroad. It also aims to protect the country’s interests in these areas, the official added.