China's efforts to construct a 2,000m airstrip on Phu Lam island in Vietnam's Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago are unfounded and do not alter the fact that Vietnam holds indisputable sovereign rights over the archipelago, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Le Hai Binh said on October 9 in a regular press conference.
The ancient “Le khao le the linh Hoang Sa” (Feast and Commemoration Festival for Hoang Sa Soldiers) practiced by fishermen in Quang Ngai's Ly Son island district for centuries (Photo: VNA)
“Vietnam has full legal basis and historical evidence that affirms its sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos. That actions by China seriously violate Vietnam 's sovereignty over the archipelagos, infringing the Vietnam–China agreement on the basic principles guiding the settlement of issues at sea signed in October 2011,” Binh highlighted.
He said the move also went against the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) which was reached between China and ASEAN in 2002 and the common perspective voiced by the two countries' leaders. Furthermore, it violated international law and further complicated the situation in the East Sea and the region, harming the development of bilateral relations between the two countries, he said.
“Vietnam strongly protests China 's illegal actions,” he stated, stressing that “ Vietnam demands China respect Vietnam 's sovereignty and refrain from repeating similar actions, thus contributing to the growth of the friendship and cooperation between the two countries and the maintenance of peace and stability in the East Sea .”
Also on October 9, Binh reported that the Netherlands finished identifying three Vietnamese citizens aboard the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 that crashed in the Ukraine in July.
They include Nguyen Ngoc Minh and her daughter and son, Dang Minh Chau and Dang Quoc Duy.
The Foreign Ministry asked the Vietnamese Embassy in the Netherlands to coordinate with the Dutch side to support the family of the victims to complete the necessary procedures to bring them home on October 12 for burial.
The Foreign Ministry extends its deepest sympathies to the family of the victims, the Spokesperson said.
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