Taiwan Frigate, helicopters accompany patrol the South China Sea
The navy said the frigates and helicopters had joined three coast guard ships on a four-day patrol mission, with a Knox-class frigate also nearby.
The navy fully backs coast guard action to protect fishing boats, it added.
The coast guard said it had dispatched two vessels — one equipped with a 20mm cannon and the other with a 40mm cannon — to patrol the waters and another coast guard ship has left Kaohsiung Harbor to join the navy-led patrol mission.
Jang De-hau (張德皓), director of the Coast Guard Administration’s Southern Coastal Patrol Office, said that if coast guard ships spotted the Philippine vessel that opened fire on a Taiwanese fishing boat on Thursday, killing a member of its crew, it would be seized.
Those on board would be arrested in accordance with international maritime law and would be brought to Taiwan to face a criminal investigation, Jang added.