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  • » 05/07/2010, 00.00

    CHINA – JAPAN – VIETNAM

    Tokyo and Hanoi to challenge Chinese sovereignty in the East/South East China Sea



    Japan lodges a formal protest with China because one of ships threateningly approached a Japanese vessel. Vietnam complains about a unilateral fishing ban imposed by China in a disputed area also claimed by Malaysia, the Philippines, Brunei and Taiwan.
    Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The South East China and East China Seas continue to be cauldrons of controversy. Japan accused China of violating its sovereign rights in a disputed area of the East China Sea. Vietnam is also set to protest against a fishing ban imposed by China that violates its "sovereignty" over disputed islands in the South China Sea.

    Japan’s Foreign Ministry summoned the Chinese ambassador to protest action by a Chinese ship in approaching and apparently threatening a Japanese survey vessel on Monday, some 320 kilometres northwest off Amami Oshima Island, southern Japan, in waters that Tokyo claims as its exclusive economic zone.

    Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said the ship was acting within its rights.

    In the South China Sea, Vietnam is again at loggerheads with China. Both nations are already in a dispute over the Spratly and Paracels Islands, the latter occupied by China.

    For Hanoi, China’s ban on fishing in the area “is invalid”, said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Nguyen Phuong Nga. “Vietnam is going to have diplomatic contact to oppose such acts by China,” she explained.

    Both groups of islands are potentially rich in oil and natural gas, but exploration and drilling are impossible because of a number of overlapping territorial claims by China and Vietnam as well as the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan.

    Over the past year, Vietnam has reported cases of its fishing boats and equipment being seized by China.

    Whilst the sovereignty dispute simmers with its giant neighbour, Vietnam has announced an US.5-billion economic and defence development plan for a string of islands along its resource-rich coastline.

    If adopted, China will likely see it as a provocation.

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    See also

    21/03/2012 CHINA
    Beijing to boost surveillance in East and South China Seas
    Behind the banner of protecting "territorial sovereignty", a battle is underway for control of natural resources. The Chinese Navy intercepts a Japanese ship, seizes two Vietnamese fishing trawlers off the Paracel Islands. A ransom is asked for the release of their release.

    12/10/2010 VIETNAM – CHINA – US
    Vietnam urges China to talks over territorial disputes
    An ASEAN summit on military cooperation opens in Hanoi with the presence of China, Russia and the United States. For months, Beijing has tried to expand its military presence in disputed areas, with other nations turning to the international community.

    15/06/2011 CHINA – VIETNAM
    South China Sea: Beijing excludes the use of force, but warns US
    Beijing tries to reduce tensions with Vietnam and the Philippines, urging them “to do more” for “peace and stability”. It also wants issues to be settled through bilateral talks. Hanoi prefers instead a “multilateral” approach, whilst Manila calls for US help. China warns that “internationalising” the issue will make matters worse.

    13/06/2011 VIETNAM – CHINA
    South China Sea: Beijing slams Vietnamese naval drill
    Vietnam started a nine-hour live naval drill in the morning; a second one is set for the evening. No missiles will be used. For Hanoi, the action is a routine annual exercise, but Chinese media see it as a military challenge against Beijing. In Vietnam, more protests are held against Chinese claims to the Spratly and Paracel Islands.

    29/11/2012 CHINA - PHILIPPINES - VIETNAM
    South China Sea, China will allow the boarding of foreign ships
    After new passports with distorted maps, the communist regime announced that the Coast Guard of Hainan province can dock and control vessels for non-Chinese "who illegally enter territorial waters." The reference is to the maritime areas that Beijing is trying to snatch unilaterally from other governments in the area.



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