HA NOI (VNS) — Vietnamese cartoonists have expressed their views about the Chinese oil rig illegally planted in Viet Nam's territory in the East Sea.
The rig, known as Haiyang Shiyou 981, and the "cow's tongue shape", or the nine-dash line map that makes a grab for the sea territory of several nations, including Viet Nam, are the main subjects for an ongoing exhibition in Ha Noi.
Since China towed the rig into Vietnamese waters early in May, a number of exhibitions of photos, cartoons and art relating to the intrusion have been held to criticise China.
However, this is the first time cartoonists have been invited to "speak out" about China's dream of global hegemony.
The exhibition of 80 cartoons was organised by the Viet Nam Fine Arts Association.
Chairman of the association, painter Tran Khanh Chuong, said at the opening ceremony on Monday that the organisers had received nearly 200 drawings from 48 artists from around the country.
"Organising the exhibition was a meaningful way of expressing the painters' patriotism and their strong opposition against any Chinese invasion," Chuong said.
"We understand why the artists were upset when China invaded Vietnamese sea territory, used armed ships to attack Vietnamese fishermen working on their traditional fishing grounds. They showed no concern for the victims they left behind in the sea," said Chuong.
"The exhibition is a chance for us to contribute to protecting our country's sovereignty," he said.
|Cutting remarks: An exhibition of cartoons in Ha Noi expresses artists' opposition to China's incursion into Vietnamese sea territory.
The artists portray China's "cow's tongue" shape map grabing almost the whole East Sea, the oil rig serving as a knife thrusting into Viet Nam's continental shelf
"China carries fire in one hand and water in the other," Chuong said. "Although Chinese vessels have rammed Vietnamese ships many times, Beijing held press conferences to fool the world into thinking that their big ships were attacked by smaller Vietnamese boats."
Artist Ly Truc Dung said that, like other artists, he painted his first cartoon on the issue in May when China dispatched the oil rig to the East Sea.
"The cartoons offer a clear insight into China's ambition of seizing the entire East Sea under the umbrella of their seemingly peaceful statements," Dung said.
Painter Pham Tan Phu, 85, sent 20 drawings to the organising board. He said he was happy that many young viewers took photos of his works and put them on social networks.
The exhibition will run until July 7 at the Exhibition Hall, 16 Ngo Quyen Street, Ha Noi.
The Fine Arts Association will co-operate with other organisations to display the cartoons and other artworks from other East Sea exhibitions around the country. — VNS