Vietnam has been defending its waters in the East Vietnam Sea in a “peaceful and lawful manner" amid recent developments, foreign ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang said in a statement on Tuesday.
The Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs posted the statement on its website, including remarks from Hang on what it called “recent developments” in the waterway, without specifying what such “developments” were.
“Vietnamese authorities at sea have been exercising Vietnam’s sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction in a peaceful and lawful manner to safeguard Vietnamese waters,” Hang was quoted as answering questions from journalists.
The Southeast Asian country treasures peace, friendship, cooperation and goodwill, the spokesperson said, adding that Vietnam stands ready to settle disputes and differences through peaceful means.
“On this basis, Vietnam has been implementing a comprehensive range of peaceful measures for addressing issues, and staunchly demanding parties to respect [our country’s] waters and [its] legitimate rights and interests in [the] waters and to refrain from acts that would further complicate the situation,” Hang remarked.
The diplomat said Vietnam had asserted many times that it has sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the waters in the East Vietnam Sea, as established in the provisions of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, to which Vietnam and other relevant littoral states are party.
“Therefore, all activities undertaken by foreign parties in Vietnamese waters must comply with relevant provisions of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and Vietnamese laws,” Hang underlined.
“Without Vietnam’s permission, all actions undertaken by foreign parties in Vietnamese waters have no legal effect, and constitute encroachments [on] Vietnamese waters, and violations of international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.”
She reiterated Vietnam’s consistent position to resolutely and persistently stand against any act infringing upon the country’s sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction in its waters through peaceful means in accordance with international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.