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Vietnamese organisations oppose China's action

Update: May, 11/2014 - 19:53
The Haiyang Shiyou 981 oil rig in the East Sea's waters of Viet Nam. — Photo Xinhua

HA NOI (VNS) — The Vietnam Peace Committee (VPC) and the Vietnam-China Friendship Association (VCFA) on May 10 sent messages to relevant Chinese organisations opposing China's recent acts of violating Vietnam's sovereignty in the East Sea.

In its message to the Chinese People's Association for Peace and Disarmament, the VPC wrote that during recent days the Vietnamese people have been deeply concerned over the tense situation arising in the East Sea . They said the anxiety has come from the China National Offshore Oil Corporation's placement of a drilling rig within the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf of Vietnam on May 2.

Many Chinese ships, including military vessels, escorting the rig have repeatedly attacked Vietnamese ships in the area, causing heavy material damage and threatening human life.

"Such actions are serious violations of Vietnam 's sovereign rights and jurisdiction over its exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, and run counter to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea signed by ASEAN member states and China ," the committee said.

They also violate the agreements on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues reached between the high-ranking leaders of Vietnam and China, as well as exchanges of views and agreements between the Vietnam Peace Committee and the Chinese People's Association for Peace and Disarmament, it said, adding they are the root cause of tension and threat to stability in the East Sea.

The actions adversely impact the political trust between Vietnam and China and their on-going negotiations on sea-related issues, and damage the time-honored friendship between the people of the two countries, the committee stated.

"The Vietnam Peace Committee stands energetically against the above-mentioned moves, and proposes that the Chinese Association for Peace and Disarmament take positive measures conducive to preserving the traditional relations of friendship and cooperation between the people of Vietnam and China ," the message wrote.

Meanwhile, the message from the VCFA President to the Chairman of the China-Vietnam Friendship Association stated that the Vietnamese people and VCFA members are deeply concerned about and discontented with China 's recent acts in Vietnam 's exclusive economic zone and continental shelf.

From the overall situation of Vietnam-China relations and in the spirit of friendship and respect for international law, the VCFA leader proposed Chinese forces end their provocative actions, withdraw the drilling rig and avoid further complicating the situation.

He emphasised the need to hold negotiations to solve differences, creating a peaceful environment for both countries' people to develop their respective nations in line with their aspirations and friendship.

On the same day, the Vietnam Historian Association also issued a declaration protesting China's illegal placement of an oil rig within Vietnam's exclusive economic zone and its threats to Vietnamese ships in Vietnamese waters.

Former Vice President and Chairwoman of the Viet Nam Peace and Development Foundation Nguyen Thi Binh yesterday reads a statement opposing China's illegal deployment of an oil rig in the waters of the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf of Viet Nam, at a meeting held by the Viet Nam Union of Friendship Organisations. – VNA/VNS Photo An Dang
The association denounced China's act, saying that it has blatantly violated the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Vietnam and deliberately infringed on Vietnam's economic exclusive zone.

China's move defied the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) of which China itself is a member. It also violated the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea signed between ASEAN and China in 2002.

The association also said that China's move went against pledges which had been committed by Chinese and Vietnamese leaders and had lifted tensions.

China's dangerous behaviour has negatively impacted marine safety and security in the East Sea and the interests of ASEAN countries and the world, the association stated.

Historically, Vietnam has respected China and done its utmost to build the friendship with its neighbour, the association stated, adding that history also proves that Vietnam never gives in to aggression and resolutely defends its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The association has demanded that China remove its rig and ships from Vietnam's waters in accordance with the 1982 UNCLOS and in the spirit of DOC to restore peace, stability and marine security in the East Sea.

Chairman of the Vietnam Journalists Association (VJA), Thuan Huu also sent a letter to his Chinese counterpart to express his deep concern over the escalating tension in the East Sea as a result of China's placement of an oil rig in Vietnam's waters, escorted by military vessels.

The move has seriously violated Vietnam's sovereignty over its exclusive economic zone and continental shelf and gone against international law and practice, hurting the two peoples and negatively affecting bilateral political trust and cooperation, Huu noted.

The VJA resolutely protests this infringement and demands that the Chinese side immediately remove its oil rig and vessels from Vietnam's waters and never repeat such actions again.

The All-China Journalists Association (ACJA) and the Chinese press should be fully aware of the legitimate interests and legal stance of Vietnam in the current East Sea dispute in order to protect peace and stability, VJA chairman has stated.

Huu's letter said that Vietnam and China's friendship and cooperation must serve the basic interests of the two peoples in the long run and aid regional and global peace, stability and development.

Both sides should respect international laws, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) agreed between China and ASEAN, and the agreements between the two leaders.

The VJA underscored efforts by the Vietnamese Government to protect its legal sovereignty through peaceful measures, including its calls to hold dialogues with China to settle the issue.— VNS

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