Indonesia to summon Chinese envoy after boat confrontation


JAKARTA: Indonesia will summon the Chinese envoy in Jakarta after a confrontation between vessels from the two countries in the South China Sea, a minister said Sunday.

The incident happened Saturday when surveillance vessels chased and caught a Chinese fishing boat allegedly operating in waters near the Indonesian Natuna Islands without a permit, Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti said.

As the Chinese fishing boat was being towed away by the Indonesians, a Chinese coast guard vessel approached and collided with the fishing boat.

A bigger Chinese coast guard vessel approached later and the Indonesians decided to leave the fishing boat, she said.

“We respect a big country like China, and China should also respect the sovereignty of Indonesia and respect that we are at war with illegal fishing,” Pudjiastuti told reporters.

She urged the foreign ministry in Jakarta to lodge a “strong protest” over the “arrogance” of the Chinese vessels.

The fisheries ministry will summon the Chinese envoy in Jakarta, the minister’s spokeswoman confirmed to AFP.