North Korean boat hijacks three Chinese fishing boats
Thursday 17 May 2012
A North Korean boat hijacked three boats with 29 Chinese fishermen on
board and demanded 1.2 million yuan ($190,000) for their release,
Chinese media reported today.
It was unclear if a territorial dispute or piracy was behind the incident involving boats from the two communist-led nations. China is the North's biggest diplomatic ally and source of economic assistance.
The fishing boats were hijacked in a Chinese section of the Yellow Sea on 8 May and moved to North Korean waters, the Beijing News reported. The paper said the North Korean boat was manned by armed men in blue hats and uniforms but didn't otherwise identify them.
Border police in northeastern China's coastal Liaoning province told the state newspaper they were in contact with the North Korean captors but declined to comment further.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said today that Beijing is in close contact with North Korea about the situation and hopes it can be resolved as soon as possible.
"We urged the North Korean side to guarantee the legal rights of the Chinese fishermen," Hong said at a regular news conference. He refused to elaborate or clarify whether the payment allegedly being demanded was considered a ransom.
South Korea's coast guard says it has seized hundreds of Chinese ships over the years for illegal fishing in the Yellow Sea, which is rich in blue crabs, anchovies and croaker. The ships are usually released after a fine is paid, though violence occasionally occurs.
In 2008, one South Korean coast guard officer was killed and six others injured in a clash with Chinese fishermen in South Korean waters.
sportLiverpool 5 Norwich City 1: Uruguayan striker has now scored 11 league goals against the club
arts + entsOlivier-nominated actor and singer is set to star in Lloyd Webber's musical about the Profumo affair
filmWith more than 70 per cent of early films lost, archivists are scouring the world to preserve the precious examples that remain
sportThe coach of Chalfont St Peter's under-10s football team was relieved of his duties after he sent an email to parents that said: 'I am only interested in winning'
techA piece of new hi-tech kit aims to get us scribbling again
indybestMake getting out of the wrong side of bed on cold winter mornings a thing of the past with our selection of night-time covers
life + styleClarissa Baldwin is the brains behind the slogan 'A Dog is for Life not just for Christmas'
- 1 The hardwired difference between male and female brains could explain why men are 'better at map reading'
- 2 Is this the scariest advert ever? Japanese tyre commercial comes with its own disclaimer and health warning
- 3 UK chef creates world's most expensive ready meal - a fish pie costing £314
- 4 Food poverty in UK has reached level of 'public health emergency', warn experts
- 5 I’m sure Kate Moss doesn't care about posing for Playboy. But I do
£50000 - £70000 per annum + London: Harrington Starr: Senior Automation QA Eng...
£35000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits : Harrington Starr: SQL 2008 R2/2012 Deve...
£38000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: Creative Audit Se...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: SQL Developer (TSQL, P...