Go to contents

Chinese fishing boats, military police engage in seek-and-hide game at mouth of Han River

Chinese fishing boats, military police engage in seek-and-hide game at mouth of Han River

Posted June. 15, 2016 07:26,   

Updated June. 15, 2016 07:51


Chinese fishing boats that had withdrawn from neutral waters at the mouth of the Han River due to crackdown operation staged by the South Korean military police and maritime police, has re-entered the neutral waters and resumed fishing in less than a quarter of a day after withdrawal, engaging in a seek-and-hide game.

According to the military authority, Chinese fishing boats, all of which had pulled out from the neutral waters around 11:40 a.m. on Monday, re-entered the waters in phases from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on the day. They took advantage of the fact the military does not conduct operation at night. About 10 fishing boats that re-entered the waters returned to Bolum and Seogeom islands at the mouth of the Han River. This is the location where Chinese fishing boats had engaged in illegal fishing on Friday, when the military police launched operation to kick out civilian fishing boats from neutral waters for the first time since the armistice agreement in 1953.

“It has not been confirmed whether the fishing boats are the same ones that had withdrawn from the waters or not,” a military source said. “Chinese fishing boats are believed to have engaged in illegal fishing from Monday night to Tuesday morning in the waters.”

When the military police resumed operation to kick them out on Tuesday, the Chinese fishing boats ran away from the neutral waters to within 100 meters in the North Korean coast, which are off limit for the South Korean military police. All the fishing boats, which stayed put for hours, left from the neutral waters to north of the Northern Limit Line in the Yellow Sea from 11 a.m. to noon on Tuesday. Judging that Chinese fishing boats will continue entering and running away from the waters, the military police plan to deploy troops constantly. “We will continue operation irrespective of emergence of Chinese fishing boats,” a military source said.

손효주기자 hjson@donga.com