President Joko Widodo and Minister of Maritime and Fisheries Susi Pudjiastuti have been talking tough recently, saying they would sink ships caught illegally fishing in Indonesian waters. Some people thought it was all just talk.
Well, the government just proved it wasn’t bluffing. The Indonesian navy sank three Vietnamese fishing boats today in the waters off of Siantan Island in Riau . The boats had been found illegally fishing in Indonesian territorial waters close to the same are.
According to the Jakarta Post, the boats were shot by Navy ships from a safe distance. To speed up the whole sinking process, explosives were attached to the boats and detonated after being fired upon.
Don’t worry, nobody was harmed in the sinking of the ships (except perhaps, ironically, some fish). The Vietnamese boats and their crews were caught by Indonesian authorities on Nov 2 and arrested for fishing without the proper licenses. The crews were taken into custody and their illegal catch was sold to buy food for the detainees (though couldn’t they have just been fed their own fish?).
So look out illegal fishers, Indonesia is coming for you and we mean business.