Presented by Mr. Ngo Ngoc Thu, Vice Commander and Chief of Staff of the Vietnamese Coast Guard at the International Press Conference on June 16th, 2014
I. On the Chinese side
1.Escort forces of oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981
On May 27, oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981 has been moved from the former location, which is 17 nautical miles South West of the Triton island to a new location, which is 23 nautical miles South East of the Triton island. In early June, the location of the oil rig was slightly adjusted before settling at the current location.
- Since the beginning of June, the Chinese oil rig escort forces have frequently maintained 101 to 115 vessels and crafts of various types, including 04 to 06 warships (two missile frigates 534, 572; two fast-attack missile crafts 751, 756; two minesweepers 839, 840) and law-enforcement vessels, towing and service vessels, transport vessels, oil tankers and fishing boats.
- China constantly uses surveillance planes (B3566, B3843); and noticeably jet fighter SU-27, aerial scout TU-154 (no. 81223) and early warning aircraft KJ-200 (no. 9421) to hover over Vietnamese ships at 500-1000m heights to scout, intimidate the Vietnamese ships.
2. On-site developments as of June 15th
- The location of oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981 remains unchanged.
- China uses 110 vessels to protect the oil rig, including 06 warships (02 missile frigates 534, 535; two fast-attack crafts 751, 756; two minesweepers 839, 840); 34 coast guard vessels; 02 maritime surveillance ships; 02 patrol vessels; 01 fishery law enforcement ship; 18 towing vessels; 14 transport vessels; and 33 fishing boats.
- During the day, we detected airplane KJ-200 coded 9421 hovering 03 times around and plane Y12 hovering 02 times over the Vietnamese ships at 300-500m heights.
- From 7:30 to 08:05 of June 15: China used 16 vessels (Coast guard 3411, 2506, 23, 2371, 44105, 1112, 2337, 13101, 33101, 3383, 263, 2166, 21, 33102 and two towing vessels) to obstruct Vietnamese Coast Guard vessel 8003, 2016, 2015, 2013, 4032, 4033 and fishery surveillance vessel 952 at the location from 8.2 to 10 nautical miles from the oil rig.
3. Operation tactics
The Chinese escort fleet is divided into
3 rings: the inner ring which is 1 – 1.5 nautical miles from the rig with 10 –
15 vessels; the middle ring which is 4.5 – 5 nautical miles from the rig with
40 - 45 vessels; the outer ring which is 10 - 12 nautical miles from the oil
rig with 25 – 35 vessels. The inner ring vessels frequently swap locations.
China constantly deploy 9 to 12 speed vessels together with the towing vessels
to closely follow the Vietnamese vessels at a distance of 200m shouting
high-power speakers and honks, standing ready to ram and fire water cannon at
the Vietnamese ships.
Chinese vessels are ready to cut-off,
rear-block, approach the side and collide with Vietnamese ships, fire
high-power water cannon to cause damage to the Vietnamese ships and on-deck
equipments, use high frequency sonar system and high-lumen light to negatively
affect the mental and physical health of the Vietnamese crews when the
Vietnamese ships approach to broadcast reassertion of Viet Nam’s sovereignty
and prevent the illegal operation of the oil rig ( at 13:55 on June 7th,
fishery resources surveillance vessel 635 was rammed by Chinese towing vessel
281 from the left rear, causing damage to the sleeping cabin measuring 5m long
and 3m wide and deforming the deck).
There are about 40 - 45 Chinese fishing
vessels divided into 2 groups and supported by their coast guard vessels. They
frequently obstruct Vietnamese fishing boats operating in Viet Nam’s
traditional fishing ground in Hoang Sa, from 30 to 40 nautical miles South West
and West-South West of the oil rig.
II. Vietnamese maritime law enforcement
forces performing their duties in the area
Despite complex weather conditions, the
Vietnamese law enforcement forces have been perseveringly stationed at the site
to perform law enforcement duties and hinder the illegal operation of the
Chinese oil rig and escort forces within Viet Nam’s waters.
III. Assessment of the on-site situation
On June 13th, Chinese Foreign
Ministry organized a press conference about oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981 where it
provided distorted information and images about on-site developments. We,
therefore, would like to clarify the followings:
- China announced that up to 12:00 of June
13th 2014, the Vietnamese vessels rammed 1547 times into Chinese
vessels, damaging the ship bow. We reject the false and unreasonable
information as such. In reality, only Chinese vessels intentionally rammed and
fired water cannon at the Vietnamese ships causing damages to 36 times/ships
(23 fishery resources surveillance ships, 05 coast guard vessels, 07 fishing
boats, among which fishing boat DNa 90152 was sank by Chinese vessel 11209 at
16:00 on May 26th 2014 at 16.5 nautical miles South West from the
oil rig). Since May 3rd, a total of 15 Vietnamese fishery resources
surveillance staff and 02 Vietnamese fishermen have been wounded. We have all
the evidence and images showing Chinese vessels ramming Vietnamese vessels. The
Vietnamese vessels could never have been able to hit the Chinese vessel bow
with their deck and rear.
- About China’s slandering Viet Nam of
deploying frogmen, casting fishing nets and barriers at the site to harm the
Chinese vessels and crew:
I would reaffirm
that to date Viet Nam has not used any frogman at the site. About the fishing
nets and floating objects that China collected, when Vietnamese fishing boats
conducting normal operations within their traditional fishing ground, they were
obstructed, rammed and fired water cannon at by Chinese vessels; therefore,
they had to abandon the nets to avoid China’s impediments and destructive
activities. The Chinese vessels also seized the Vietnamese vessels’ fishing
nets and fishing equipments. The floating objects that China collected at sea
were debris caused by Chinese vessels’ ramming and water cannon firing at the Vietnamese
ships. The debris included the oil tanks, paint tanks, and wood pieces
(training equipments) and other equipments on-deck. It is totally wrongful for
China to intentionally collect the objects and claim them the artificial
- China said it would not send military
crafts and vessels to the site. In fact, both our-selves and the reporters from
major international and domestic press agencies have been able to record the
figures and codes of Chinese crafts operating at the site. These are undismissable
evidences. Over the past 40 days, it could not have been possible that 04 – 06
warships performed normal patrol over the area as announced by the Chinese
- Despite the continued impediments and
destructive activities of Chinese vessels, despite their drastic ramming and
firing of water cannon at our forces, the Vietnamese coast guard and fishery
resources surveillance have maintained utmost restraint and tried to avoid
collision with the Chinese forces. The Vietnamese vessels did not fire water
cannon nor ram the Chinese escort and fishing vessels. We only used speakers to
demand China to withdraw its oil rig and escort vessels from the Vietnamese