Korea and China will resume their joint patrols on illegal fishing activities in the Yellow Sea in October, two years after a deadly clash between Korean authorities and Chinese fishermen, Seoul's oceans ministry said Friday.
Fisheries authorities of the two nations reached an agreement in their meeting in Xingdao earlier this week to resume the joint rounds of inspections in the provisional water zone in the Yellow Sea, an area of positive collaboration between the Asian neighbors, the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said.
The joint patrol has been suspended since the Korea Coast Guard opened fire on a Chinese vessel fishing illegally in Korean waters near Incheon in September 2016. As a result, three Chinese fishermen accidentally died of smoke inhalation.
Under the agreement, each country's coast guard personnel will monitor operations by unregistered ships, violations of territorial waters and obstruction of official duties in the exclusive economic zones, the ministry said.
Korean authorities on average cracked down on about 400-500 Chinese vessels illegally fishing in Korean waters, mostly near the western maritime border with North Korea, but the number fell to 278 last year, according to the ministry. In the first half of this year, 86 Chinese boats were caught for carrying out illegal fishing activities. (Yonhap)