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AFP wants probe into deaths of Vietnamese fishers in encounter with Navy

The Armed Forces of the Philippines has ordered an investigation into the killing of two Vietnamese fishermen over the weekend following an encounter with the Philippine Navy in waters off Bolinao in Pangasinan.

In a statement released on Wednesday, AFP Public Affairs chief Colonel Edgard Arevalo said the military has also sought investigations by the Philippine National Police and the Philippine Coast Guard.

Arevalo said AFP Chief General Eduardo Año and the Flag Officer-in-Command of the Philippine Navy Vice Admiral  Ronald Joseph Mercado "ordered a thorough and impartial inquiry on the unfortunate incident."

An internal investigation in the Navy will also be conducted according to Arevalo.

Vice Admiral Ronald Joseph Mercado has ordered the relief of the ship captain while the rest of his crew were put on restrictive custody.

Arevalo said that this was to ensure that they will be made available for the duration of the investigation.

Two Vietnamese fishermen were killed on Saturday while five others were arrested after they were seen fishing within the country's exclusive territory 35 nautical miles off Bolinao, Pangasinan.

Personnel on board the Navy vessel were then prompted to fire warning shots after the Vietnamese fishermen attempted to escape. —Marlly Rome Bondoc/NB, GMA News