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Vietnam lawmaker suggests legislature issue resolution on China’s illegal rig

A Vietnamese National Assembly deputy has suggested that the legislative body issue an official statement in response to the reality that China has illegally placed its oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981 in Vietnamese waters since May 1, seriously violating Vietnam’s sovereignty.

Deputy Truong Trong Nghia speaks at the National Assembly meeting on June 19, 2014.
Deputy Truong Trong Nghia speaks at the National Assembly meeting on June 19, 2014.

Deputy Truong Trong Nghia offered his suggestion at the NA meeting on Thursday that was scheduled to discuss the Bill on Citizen’s Identification, after he apologized to the meeting’s participants about his “deviation” from its agenda.

Nghia earnestly proposed that the NA put out a statement clearly showing its attitude toward China’s violation of Vietnam’s sovereign rights and jurisdiction over its exclusive economic zone and continental shelf in the East Vietnam Sea.

“If the NA does not issue any statement or resolution on the East Vietnam Sea, I believe that the people will be very disappointed, even worried. And in the coming time, many NA deputies will face difficulty in replying to questions from the public about this issue,” Nghia said.

“And the international community will likely say: ‘The Vietnamese legislature has made no response to such a bold violation of Vietnam’s sovereignty, so there is no need for any parliamentarians in the world to voice their protest against it,’” Nghia said.

On the other hand, if the NA issues no statement against China’s wrongdoing, Beijing may take advantage of this to commit more aggressive and dangerous acts in the future, he added.

“Therefore, I hope that the leaders of the Party, NA and government will consider and approve my proposal. The NA can ask for opinions from all the deputies. If most of them give the green light, it should issue a statement or resolution on developments in the East Vietnam Sea.”

Nghia also called on other deputies to back his proposal.

Proposed content of resolution

In such a statement, the NA should affirm that Vietnam has full historical and legal evidence to prove its sovereignty over Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos.

At the same time the NA should reject the wrong arguments based on which China has claimed its sovereignty over the two archipelagos.

The statement should also point out that China used force to attack and occupy Hoang Sa and a part of Truong Sa long time ago.

Recently, China illegally dispatched an oil rig to the Vietnamese waters, and this act goes against the relevant commitments and agreements reached between China and Vietnam in particular and ASEAN in general.

“We must expose China’s scheme to exclusively occupy the East Vietnam Sea, as reflected in its illegal creation of the cow’s tongue line [also called the nine-dash line] that puts most of the East Vietnam Sea under China’s sovereignty,” Nghia said.

By planting the rig in the Vietnamese waters, China has also posed threats to maritime safety and security in the region and the world at large, the deputy added.

The NA should also reiterate the friendship with the Chinese people and at the same time direct all the Vietnamese forces, including the army, to do anything necessary to protect the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

It should ask competent agencies to take legal action against China at an international court for using force to occupy Vietnam’s Hoang Sa and part of Truong Sa, Nghia said.

Nghia’s proposal gains support

Asked by Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper for comments about Nghia’s proposal, Le Nam, a deputy from northern Thanh Hoa Province, said, “I support Nghia’s opinions. I think the NA Standing Committee should consider his proposal.”

Nam added that many other NA deputies have the same view as Nghia.

Another deputy, Bui Thi An, from Hanoi, also said she had made the same proposal as Nghia’s at an earlier meeting to discuss the country’s social and economic situation.

Similarly, deputy Dang Ngoc Tung from southern Dong Nai Province also told Tuoi Tre that the NA Standing Committee should seriously take Nghia’s proposal into account.

“The people will support and applaud the NA if it issues a statement against China’s violation,” Tung said.

Sharing the same view, Duong Trung Quoc, a deputy also from Dong Nai, said, “The NA should release a separate resolution on the East Vietnam Sea situation or at least this issue must be included in a general resolution.”

“If the NA fails to mention [China’s violation of Vietnam’s sovereignty] in any of its resolutions released in this session, the public will feel frustrated,” Quoc said.