News / Asia

N. Koreans Demand Ransom for Detained Chinese Fishermen

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei answers reporters' questions in Beijing, China  (File)Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei answers reporters' questions in Beijing, China (File)
x
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei answers reporters' questions in Beijing, China  (File)
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei answers reporters' questions in Beijing, China (File)
Stephanie Ho
BEIJING - China Central Television and the Beijing News are reporting a rare public maritime spat between China and North Korea.   
 
A North Korean gunboat is reported to have seized several Chinese fishing boats, with a total of 29 people onboard, in the Yellow Sea earlier this month. The North Koreans who are holding the boats and sailors demanded nearly $190,000 for their release and set Thursday as the deadline, or else they will sell off the boats.
 
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei indicated that there is a conflict, but he gave few details.
 
He said China is maintaining close contact with North Korea to try to find an early solution to the case. He also demanded that the other side ensure the safety, rights and interests of the detained Chinese fishermen.
 
The spokesman did not elaborate, when asked to confirm whether a ransom is being demanded or whether China suspects any North Korean government involvement.
 
Chinese fishing boats have occasional conflicts with South Korean, Japanese and Philippine authorities while fishing in disputed waters, but it is rare for them to be seized by North Koreans. There are also reports that there are Chinese among the hijackers.
 
Meanwhile, the spokesman also had little to say about four South Koreans who are being held in northeastern China after authorities detained them in March.

Earlier this week, the South Korean foreign ministry said Seoul has asked Beijing to handle the case in a fair and swift manner.
 
The Chinese spokesman Thursday would only say that “competent Chinese authorities have been investigating this issue according to law.”
 
The South Koreans under detention appear to have been in contact with North Korean refugees in northeastern China to find out about life and conditions in their homeland.

You May Like

Video Protests Continue in Ferguson, Spread to Other US Cities

Missouri officials say deployment of more than 2,000 National Guard soldiers helps curb second night of rampant arson and looting in Midwestern town More

Video Ebola, Crackdown on Illegals Hit Business in Guangzhou

Chinese city has largest community of Africans in Asia More

Video Legendary Lebanese Actress, Singer Sabah Dies at 87

Music and film diva, affectionately called 'Sabbouha' by millions of her fans, performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Royal Albert Hall in London, Olympia in Paris, Sydney Opera House in Sydney More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Jonathan Huang from: Chinese Canadian
May 17, 2012 6:25 PM
To me the first reaction is that China is preparing excuses to punish N.K. Recently, N.K. seems is out of control, and must be disciplined.


by: Cả Thộn from: Hà Nội
May 17, 2012 1:21 PM
It's time for North Korea getting out of Chinese orbit. It's time for North Korea to keep distance from hungry,greedy,dirty China. This also signals the end of Chinese Communist empire.


by: Anonymous
May 17, 2012 12:11 PM
Truth is stranger than fiction: While the Chinese Navy is sailing half shod in the waters of Asia commandeering the fishing fleets of small defenseless nations; the little North Korean thorn stuck in their southern border is looting the Chinese fishing fleets.


by: Jim from: Chattanooga
May 17, 2012 10:27 AM
The North Koreans are really dumber than a door knob. To play tough against Communist China is like taking a sharp knife and slicing one's throat. It doesn't take much for China to destroy the N. Koreans. Maybe that is the best thing for all humanities. Less numb-nuts to deal with.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Changei
X
November 24, 2014 10:09 PM
Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid