Indonesia has sent a stern warning against illegal fishing – not just to China and other mainland fishermen, but to the Philippines as well.
Indonesia is ramping up a major campaign against illegal fishing in its waters.
In July along, Indonesia has impounded 71 foreign boats, and a total of 176 have been captured and sunk since President Joko Widodo took office.
Recently, several of the boats have been blown up in spectacular displays to show others that the country means business.
Indonesia is the world’s biggest archipelago, and has been attempting to stop illegal fishing for decades.
President Widodo’s policy of confiscating boats and blowing them up is the latest attempt to stamp out the illegal fishing that has cost his country billions of dollars each year.
Leading the illegal fishing campaign is Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti. He told reporters that the 71 latest boats caught illegally fishing in Indonesian waters will be blown up on August 17.
The mass sinking coincides with the 71st anniversary of Indonesia’s Independence.
Pudjiastuti said the 71 boats will be blown up in various locations around the country, sending a stern warning to those who ignore their threats.
The boats are from China, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Pudjiastuti said the plan comes at a time of maritime tensions in the waters in and around Indonesia.
Beijing and Jakarta have had repeated clashes in the waters around Indonesia, especially in the hotly contested South China Sea.