Date: Mar 21, 2020
By: H I Sutton, Contributor
The incident occurred off Kinmen, a set of islands only a few miles from the Chinese mainland. In 1958 the two countries came to blows there when China attempted to land troops. The U.S. provided naval support to Taiwan, and the Second Taiwan Strait Crises ended in a ceasefire. 71 years later and the islands’ proximity to the mainland means that they are a popular tourist attraction for both Taiwanese and Chinese visitors. Fishing rights are contested however and the local coast guard has been buying new cutters to better police the waters.
The patrol cutter, CP-1022, was brand new, having joined the fleet a few days earlier. It was on its first mission when the incident occurred. Together with another cutter it was attempting to clear the area of Chinese fishing vessels and illegal nets. At around 10 a.m. local time the Chinese boats reacted, racing at the cutters. They threw beer bottles and stones. During the melee CP-1022 was hit and damaged. Fortunately no one was injured or killed. [FULL STORY]