By: Chen Chao-fu and Christie Chen
Taipei, May 5 (CNA) A Taiwanese fishing boat and its crew, which had been detained by the Japanese coast guard last week in a disputed area of the Pacific Ocean, returned to southern Taiwan’s Pingtung County Thursday, and Premier Simon Chang (張善政) vowed to seek justice for the fishermen.
The mother and wife of the boat’s Captain Pan Chien-peng (潘建鵬) rushed over to embrace him as soon as the boat, the Tung Sheng Chi No. 16, arrived at Dafu Port in Xiaoliuqiu, an island off Pingtung County. The three of them broke down in tears as they embraced each other.
Chang, who also welcomed the fishermen at the Dafu Port, told the families of the crew that the government will seek justice for them and will continue to protect Taiwanese fishing boats operating in international waters.
He said the National Fishermen’s Association will also cover the NT$1.76 million (US$54,368) security deposit that the boat owner had to pay to the Japanese authorities in order to secure the release of the boat and its crew. [FULL STORY]