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Compensation demanded for slain Chinese in Palau

Compensation demanded for slain Chinese in Palau

Updated: 2012-04-17 09:47


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KOROR, Palau - A spokesman for the family of Chinese fisherman killed by Palau police has demanded "proper and reasonable" compensation for the excessive use of police force.

Chuan-an Lu, the cousin of Yong Lu, the slain Chinese national, said in a statement released on Tuesday, "My cousin should not have received death penalty though he might unlawfully entered Palau territorial sea for fishing."

Yong Lu was accidentally killed on March 31 after Palau police fired on his fishing vessel during a confrontation between Palau police and the Chinese fishermen.

The remaining five Chinese nationals on the vessel and 20 more on another ship have been detained by the Palaun government for over two weeks without charge and are scheduled to be released on Wednesday.

"I think the Palau Government has fully responsibility to my cousin's death, because when police are on duty, they are representatives of government," Chuan-an Lu said.

Chuan-an Lu challenged the cause of his cousin's death after Palau officials insisted that one bullet ricocheted off the engine and struck the fisherman in the thigh.

"It is obvious that there were two bullets, not just one, hit Yong Lu. Both bullets hit on the front, one in his right arm and the other in his right thigh," he said.

"Until now, the Palau Government did not mention any word regarding the compensation. Moreover, the Palau Government refused to pay the expenses for conserving my cousin's body in the hospital. This is very difficult to understand."

Lu added that "I felt great pain and deep sorrow after I saw my cousin's body. He was a good father, a good son and a good husband, but now the only left is a cold, dead body, and a broken family."

The dead fisherman is survived by a nine-year-old son and a three-year-old daughter.

Palau hasn't established foreign relations with China, so the Chinese embassy in Micronesia, which is in charge of issues concerning Palau, had immediately launched an emergency response mechanism in the wake of the incident. After days of intense diplomatic efforts, the release of the remaining fisherman was eventually secured.

In an earlier interview with Xinhua, Palau President Johnson Toribiong expressed his regret and conveyed personal condolences to the family of the slain Chinese fisherman. Toribiong said he hoped diplomacy and the judicial process would ensure a positive outcome.

While compensation and a thorough independent investigation of the circumstances surrounding Lu's death are not forthcoming, it is difficult to claim that the President's call for faith in Palau's judicial process can be assured.