Vietnam strongly opposes China’s proclamation of features in South China Sea

The Hanoitimes - Hanoi said Beijing's promulgation of geographical features is totally illegal.

Hanoi has strongly opposed Beijing’s promulgation of the so-called “standard” names for 80 entities in the South China Sea, including those within Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) Islands.

Vietnam firmly protests all activities that do harm to its sovereignty over the Paracel and Spratly Islands, and to its sovereign rights and jurisdiction rights over Vietnamese waters, Deputy Spokesperson of Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ngo Toan Thang said at a regular press conference on April 23.

Such activities are totally illegal, he stressed.

“As stated in multiple occasions, Vietnam has full historical evidence and legal basis to claim sovereignty over the Paracel and Spratly islands in accordance with international law, and claim sovereign rights and jurisdiction rights over waters in the South China Sea as established by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982,” Thang stated.

On April 19, Beijing marked out 25 islands, shoals, and reefs, and 55 underwater locations in the South China Sea that partly covers Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagoes, Chinese media reported.

Naming geographical features is part of China’s activities to cement its territorial claims in the face of increasing opposition from Vietnam and no recognization of the international community.

The statement came a day after China announced it had set up the so-called two administrative districts namely Xisha and Nansha to govern Paracels and Spratlys.

On April 19, Spokesperson of Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry Le Thi Thu Hang said in a statement that Vietnam firmly protests the establishment of the two districts and “demands China respect Vietnamese sovereignty, abolish its wrongful decisions related to the moves and ensure no recurrence in the future.”

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