30-vessel fishing fleet

On Thursday, China dispatched one of its largest-ever fishing expeditions from Hainan Island to the Spratly archipelago.

Chinese fishing boats regularly travel to the Spratlys, a potentially oil-rich archipelago that China claims as part of its territory on historical grounds, but parts of which are claimed by Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Taiwan.

The 30-vessel fishing fleet deployed on Thursday is one of the largest ever launched from Hainan, according to a report from state-run news agency Xinhua.

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