- Indonesia has vowed to come up with more "decisive actions" when it comes to protecting its waters.
- This is the third time a clash between Indonesia and China happened
- China released a statement stating that it has “abused its military force.”
Warning shots have been fired at Chinese ships that have been operating illegally on their waters late last week – Friday.
First Admiral Edi Sucipto said that Chinese fishing vessels where in waters under Indonesia’s jurisdiction. Their warship just fired warning shots.
The Chinese fishing vessels were in the country’s Natuna islands. Seven of the crews, together with one of the vessels, are currently detained.
“We will not hesitate to take decisive action against foreign ships, whatever their flag and nationality, when they commit violations in Indonesian territory,” Sucipto said.
Beijing, in return, criticized the action. China’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that that the country’s navy had “abused its military force.” The statement was released as China’s form of protest. The statement further revealed that one fisherman was injured during the incident.
China has been claiming most of the South China Sea; however, it does not include the Natuna islands. The island is said to be located between Malaysia and Borneo about 2,000km from the Chinese mainland in waters.
“China’s nine dash line, which it uses to roughly demarcate its ambitions for maritime boundaries, overlaps with the section of Indonesia’s internationally recognised exclusive economic zone extending from the Natuna islands,” South China Morning Post reports.
The incident which took on Friday was said to be the third time Indonesia interrupted and called the attention of the Chinese fishing vessels off the Natuna islands.
On May, an Indonesian frigate also fired shots at a Chinese trawler after it did not heeded the call to stop fishing. The vessel and its eight members of the crew have been seized.
“We don’t shoot for no clear reason. Protecting the sovereignty of our country is a must,” Maritime and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti wrote on social media.