Hundreds of Beijing fishing vessels, which previously caught giant squid near the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador, were detected this week by Peruvian naval forces off the country’s coast.
“Our navy is making redundant flights to ensure there is no such vessel within the scope of our jurisdiction, which is 200 miles away,” Defense Minister Jorge Chavez told reporters on Friday. Reuters, Saturday (26/9/2020). (Read: 260 Chinese Fishing Ships Near Galapagos Islands, AL Ecuador Alert)
The Coast Guard Operations Commander, Rear Admiral Jorge Portocarrero, told Reuters that the flotilla was identified and discovered after low-altitude flights of exploration aircraft and patrol boats between Sunday and Wednesday.
“Not all of them are in one place, scattered,” he said, adding that there were 250-270 ships. “We have no evidence that they have entered our maritime space.” (Also read:10 Best Options to Increase Immunity during the Covid-19 Pandemic)
The US embassy in Lima said the Chinese ships had a history of avoiding tracking and likely dumping plastic pollutants.
“Overfishing can cause enormous ecological and economic damage. Peru cannot afford such a large loss,” the US embassy said on Twitter.