Provocative actions and tensions in the East Sea have come from the Chinese side, Spokesperson of the US Department of State Jen Psaki said at a daily press conference on May 27.

Regarding a Vietnamese fishing boat that sank following a collision with a Chinese vessel in the East Sea, the spokesperson said the US side does not have independent information on the issue and is seeking to uncover the facts.

The US remains concerned about the dangerous conduct and threat by Chinese vessels operating in the East Sea, she declared, adding the country continues to call on all parties to exercise restraint to lower the tensions and address the disputes in a safe and responsible manner.

On May 26, the Chinese ship 11209 sank Vietnam’s DNa 90152 fishing boat with 10 members on board in Vietnamese waters.

The boat, from the central city of Da Nang, was undertaking its regular operation in its traditional fishing grounds when it was deliberately encircled by 40 Chinese fishing vessels before being attacked by the 11209.

The incident occurred at 4 pm at a site 17 nautical miles from where China’s Haiyang Shiyou-981 oil rig was illegally standing. The location is within the traditional fishing grounds of Vietnamese fishermen in Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf.

China illegally positioned the rig in early May, surrounded by a large fleet of armed vessels, military ships and aircraft, in Vietnamese waters at 15 degrees 29 minutes 58 seconds north latitude and 111 degrees 12 minutes 06 seconds east longitude. That is 80 miles deep inside Vietnam’s continental shelf and exclusive economic zone, as prescribed by the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982).

On May 27, it moved the rig to the location 15 degrees 33.38 minutes north latitude and 111 degrees 34.62 minutes east longitude, still completely within Vietnam’s continental shelf.

Chinese ships have repeatedly rammed and fired water cannons into Vietnamese coast guard and fisheries surveillance boats, which are carrying out their law enforcement missions in the country’s waters, leaving many Vietnamese vessels damaged and officers injured.-VNA