PETALING JAYA: The Foreign Ministry has summoned the Vietnam ambassador to Malaysia to explain the large number of encroachments of Vietnamese vessels into Malaysian territorial waters.
The Ministry said its Deputy Secretary-General Raja Datuk Nushirwan Zainal Abidin received Le Quy Quynh on Wednesday (May 8)
It said Nushirwan handed over a protest note expressing the Malaysian government’s objection to these repeated encroachments.
“The Vietnamese government was urged to take measures to rectify the situation,” it said in a statement Wednesday (May 8).
The Ministry added that 748 vessels and 7,203 Vietnamese crew members have been detained from 2006 until 2019.
It added that the encroachments into Malaysian waters by Vietnamese fishermen were not only a threat to Malaysian citizens but also a violation of Malaysia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
It said the encroachments also contravene international law including relevant provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos) 1982.
“Bilateral relations between Malaysia and Vietnam remains strong with both countries enjoying vibrant relations in a wide range of sectors under the Strategic Partnership framework.
“The repeated encroachments by Vietnamese fishermen would only hamper efforts made by both countries to strengthen relations,” Wisma Putra said.
The Ministry said Le Quy had taken note of the protest and gave his assurance that the position of the Malaysian government would be conveyed to Vietnamese authorities.
“Assurances were also given that these encroachments were illegal under Vietnamese law, and that the local authorities there would be informed of the matter,” it said.