Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Vietnam warns Taiwan over Spratly Islands
ChannelNewsAsia ^ | 01 November 2003 1307 hrs

Posted on 11/02/2003 4:41:04 AM PST by Rams82

HANOI : Vietnam has warned Taiwan to stop violating its sovereignty by driving away Vietnamese fishing boats near the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea.

In a statement carried by state media on Saturday, foreign ministry spokesman Le Dung said recent acts by Taiwan in seas near the archipelago were "counter to the common trend of peace, stability and development in the region".

Advertisement

State media gave no details of specific incidents.

"Vietnam's indisputable sovereignty over the Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracels) archipelagos is confirmed by historical evidence and has a legal basis," Dung added.

Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines as well as China and Taiwan all claim the Spratly Islands, a potentially oil-rich chain of islands.

The 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed a treaty with China in November last year hoping to prevent an escalation of tensions over the Spratlys.

All parties agreed to refrain from activities that would escalate tensions in the region. The deal involved the four Southeast Asian nations and China, but excludes Taiwan.

Vietnam and China have clashed twice over the Spratlys, in 1988 and 1992, while skirmishes have also occurred between other countries, testing relations while threatening to undermine regional security.

"While accelerating the negotiations for essential and long-term solutions to disputes, related parties should maintain stability, preserve the status quo, show self-restraint and refrain from aggravating the situation," Dung said.

Although it is believed the archipelago sits on top of vast reserves of oil and gas, their commercial potential has never been confirmed. The islands also flank international shipping lanes.

Vietnam said last month it was mulling tourist trips to Spratlys.

- AFP


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: southchinasea; spratlyislands; taiwan; vietnam

1 posted on 11/02/2003 4:41:04 AM PST by Rams82
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Rams82
FYI: During the war in Viet Nam I was a member of a small team that visited the Paracels when they were still occupied by South Vietnam. The surrounding islets and beaches were just filled with sea turtles laying eggs. (Almost assuredly the Chinese will have killed them off by now.) On Paracel Island itself there was a small Foreign Legion cemetary which baffled me. Did the French use the island as a prison colony for its troops? Who knows. There were many mysteries about the place, which was only about a mile and a half square.
2 posted on 11/02/2003 8:25:54 AM PST by gaspar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Rams82
bttt
3 posted on 11/02/2003 10:16:45 PM PST by Tailgunner Joe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson