Japan government protested to China as Chinese trawler suspected poaching off Japan’s Coast and sailed away with Japanese inspectors on board.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the boarding occurred on November 5 in Japan’s exclusive economic zone off Kagoshima, adding that a complaint about the “vicious” case had been made via diplomatic channels.
The incident surfaced almost two months after it occurred when Suga responded to a reporter’s question following a news report. Suga did not explain why nothing was released earlier, and the Foreign Ministry declined to give further details.
According to Japan’s Fisheries Agency, about ten officials were on board the boat when it left the country’s territorial waters.
With the help of the Japanese coast guard, the inspectors returned to their ship after a 12-hour chase of the trawler, but hey had to let go the Chinese trawler considering it had left Japan Exclusive Economic Zone, Japanese officials said.
China Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying responded and told reporters, and there is no truth the Chinese fishing vessel conducted cross-border fishing. China is strongly dissatisfied with Japan’s inspection. Adding Japan should not disturb the operations by Chinese fishing vessels.
The number of suspected Chinese poachers has been rising in recent years, prompting Japanese fisheries officials to conduct more patrols.
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