A French director has affirmed that he always looks towards fishermen in central Vietnam, especially at a time when China is taking a series of illegal actions in Vietnam’s waters, including the ramming of Vietnamese ships.

Andre Menras, the author of the documentary film “Hoang Sa-Vietnam: The Pain and Losses”, made the affirmation at a meeting with Vietnamese scholars in Hanoi on July 11.

The director, whose Vietnamese name is Ho Cuong Quyet, confided that when the film was screened in foreign countries, many people expressed their sympathy with him and raised money in support of Vietnamese fishermen.

He said that in the film, he tried to show some documents relating to Vietnamese fishermen who were detained and had their assets seized and damaged by China.

He noted China’s illegally placement of its oil rig Haiyang Shiyou-981 in Vietnam’s waters irrespective of international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to which it is a party. Chinese ships aggresstively attacked Vietnam’s law enforcement forces at sea and hindered Vietnamese fishing boats from catching in areas around the rig site.

These acts violate not only the 1982 UNCLOS but also human rights, he confirmed.

Menras was the first foreigner to be granted Vietnamese citizenship in 2009 for his activities in support of Vietnam’s struggle against the US in the past.

His 59 minute-long film focuses on Ly Son fishermen who work in the waters of Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago and their efforts in overcoming hardships to earn a living. It is also a story about the women of Hoang Sa who have sacrificed for their families and suffered great losses when they lost their husbands at sea.-VNA