Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Lê Hải Bình.
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam once again asserts that it has sufficient legal grounds and historical evidence affirming its sovereignty over Hoàng Sa (Paracel) and Trường Sa (Spratly) archipelagoes, Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Lê Hải Bình said yesterday.
He made the statement during a regular press conference in reply to reporters’ queries about Việt Nam’s stance on China’s announcement on Monday that it had successfully landed military aircraft on airports in Vành Khăn (Mischief) and Xubi (Subi) reefs in Việt Nam’s Trường Sa islands.
Also on Monday, the Chinese Transport Ministry declared that it finished the construction of four lighthouses and began building the fifth on features in Trường Sa.
Regardless of Việt Nam’s protest and the international community’s concern, those actions seriously violated Việt Nam’s sovereignty, Bình said.
“They are illegal and cannot change the truth about Việt Nam’s sovereignty over Trường Sa and Hoàng Sa.”
Việt Nam requests China to immediately end violations of Việt Nam’s sovereignty, seriously abide by international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties (DOC) in the East Sea (South China Sea), as well as refrain from actions that complicate the East Sea issue, he stated.
Regarding whether ASEAN will issue a joint statement in response to the Arbitral Tribunal’s award, Bình stressed that maintaining peace, stability, navigation and overflight security and safety in the East Sea is the common interest and responsibility of all countries within and outside of the region.
“ASEAN’s consistent viewpoint is resolving disputes through peaceful measures, including diplomatic and legal processes, on the basis of respecting the UN Charter and international laws, including the 1982 UNCLOS,” the spokesman said, adding that the grouping also underlines the role of its unity and centrality in ensuring peace and stability and promoting co-operation with partners.
He emphasised Việt Nam’s call on relevant parties to exercise self-restraint and respect international laws and the DOC, while not taking actions that complicate the situation so as to help maintain peace, stability and security in the East Sea.
The Hague Arbitral Tribunal on Tuesday rendered the ruling on the case brought by the Philippines against China’s claims in the South China Sea.
It said China has caused permanent and irreparable harm to the coral reef ecosystem at the Spratly islands, and that it also has no historic title over waters of the South China Sea.
Amnesty International VN’s report “untrue”
The information mentioned in Amnesty International’s recent report on the situation at detention camps in Việt Nam was untrue, stated spokesman Lê Hải Bình.
Việt Nam’s consistent policy is to ensure and promote human rights in conformity with the country’s Constitution and international standards, he said.
“As a member of seven United Nations conventions on human rights, including the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Việt Nam always follows the member state’s commitments and obligations strictly and fully,” Bình said.
The country’s efforts and achievements in ensuring and promoting human rights have received acknowledgement from the international community, he added. — VNS