Indonesia repatriates Vietnamese fishermen ahead of lunar New Year hinh anh 1Officials from Vietnamese Embassy in Indonesia talk with Vietnamese fishermen (Photo VNA)

Jakarta (VNA)
– The Vietnam Embassy in Indonesia is working with local authorities to send home 71 Vietnamese fishermen, who were captured for violating Indonesia’s waters, within January.

On January 6, 39 people of the group departed from the Soekarno–Hatta International Airport in Jakarta. Most of the leaving was held captivity on Indonesian islands as deponents at trials for their ship captains.

A day earlier, 21 Vietnamese fishermen were repatriated. Eleven more will make their journey home on January 10.

Tran Minh Cu, Counsellor of the Vietnamese Embassy, said more repatriation trips like these will be organised before the lunar New Year holiday.

These fishermen were said to have not been equipped with sufficient legal knowledge; many of them were abandoned by their captains when being arrested. Their disadvantaged backgrounds made it hard for them to complete procedures to return to Vietnam. Some said they will stop sailing and seek other livelihoods on land.

According to the embassy, in 2017, about 110 Vietnamese fishing boats caught fish in Indonesia’s waters and close to 1,300 fishermen were captured for the violation, compared with 58 boats and 644 sailors in 2015 and 109 boats and 1,120 sailors in 2016.

As of December 2017, the embassy in collaboration with agencies from both sides brought home 1,263 fishermen.-VNA