In the Taiwanese Matsu archipelago, only 9 kilometers from mainland China, the sky has been periodically lit with a continuous green light for several months. Chinese squid fishermen use the extremely powerful green lights, which abound in the area, to lure the animals to the surface, but they actually change the landscape of the islands: “It’s like being in a science fiction movie,” He said A resident of Al Washington Post.
“It felt like the entire island was under siege.”
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The archipelago is historically famous for its abundance of fish in its waters, but local fishing has long been in crisis: local fishermen blame Chinese ships shoveling the ocean floor for the sand needed to power the many construction sites on the mainland.
Tensions between China and Taiwan have been rising for months of Chinese claims On the sovereignty of the island, which enjoys de facto independence. These tensions, in addition to the numerous violations of airspace claimed by Taiwan recently by the Chinese military, and other similar military or diplomatic maneuvers, also consist of smaller provocations, such as those that occur daily on Taiwan’s small islands. .
Recently, the phenomenon of green lights intensified at night, due to the great demand for squid from China. In the most suitable period for their catch, which runs from June to September, one boat can catch up to 180 kilograms, which are then sold in the markets of Fujian Province for the equivalent of about $11 per kilo. Writes The Washington Post.
Since April, Taiwan authorities have confiscated more than eight tons of bait and traps left by Chinese fishermen. But there has been no dialogue between archipelago officials and China since 2016, and it is difficult to find a common solution.
Locals consider the increasingly dense presence of green lights illuminating the coasts as a kind of psychological stress from China. For many, it also harms other types of fishing and tourism, on which the local economy depends heavily. On the other hand, Chinese fishermen argue that night lighting has only practical reasons.
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