Indonesia returns 16 Vietnamese fishermen ahead of Tet hinh anh 1Nguyen Thanh Giang, who is in charge of consular affairs at the Vietnamese Embassy in Indonesia, is talking with Vietnamese fishermen before they return home. (Source: VNA)

 Jakarta (VNA) – The Vietnamese Embassy in Indonesia on February 12 completed procedures to receive 16 Vietnamese fishermen from Indonesian agencies at Soekarno Hatta International Airport in Jakarta

This is the last batch of freed Vietnamese fishermen in the year as  Vietnam’s traditional New Year (Tet) is approaching. 

Most of the fishermen hail from Kien Giang and Tien Giang  provinces in the south and the central provinces of Binh Dinh and Thanh Hoa. 

They are witnesses at trials held for Vietnamese captains and chief mechanics who were arrested by Indonesia for breaching the country’s territorial waters while fishing. They were detained on Tarempa island of Indonesia’s Riau archipelago for 10-18 months due to the lengthy trials.

Nguyen Thanh Giang, who is in charge of consular affairs at the Vietnamese Embassy, said to repatriate the detained fishermen on the occasion of the Tet holiday, the embassy coordinated with agencies of both Indonesia and Vietnam to complete relevant procedures. 

The embassy will continue to keep a close watch on trials to bring the remaining fishermen home, he said. 

All the freed fishermen expressed their happiness to be returning home. 

Since the beginning of this year, the embassy has repatriated a total of 150 fishermen by air. About 150 others are serving jail sentences in the country or are witnesses of trials. -VNA