Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Warning against "threat or use of force" in the South China Sea: the US and Vietnam


HANOI: The US and Vietnam cautioned on Monday against the "danger or utilization of power" in the contested South China Ocean, days after the most recent conflict including Chinese vessels.

According to Vietnam's Communist Party chief Nguyen Phu Trong and President Joe Biden, the competing claims on the strategic waterway need to be resolved in accordance with international standards.

An international court ruling that Beijing's claim has no legal basis has been ignored. Beijing claims almost the entire sea, which is used for trade worth trillions of dollars every year.

In a joint statement, Biden and Trong stated, "The leaders underscored their unwavering support for the peaceful resolution of disputes in accordance with international law, without the threat or use of force."

"Freedom of navigation, overflight, and unimpeded lawful commerce in the South China Sea" was another of their demands.

The assertion came a day after Biden and Trong figured out an agreement to extend collaboration, broadly seen as a method for countering China's developing emphaticness in the district.

Washington is in constant conflict with Beijing on a scope of issues including exchange, security, common liberties and environmental change and is hoping to help its organization of partners to counter Chinese impact.

Vietnam, which fought a war with China from 1979 to 1988, is wary of its huge northern neighbor and is one of a few countries that has claims on the South China Sea's numerous islands and outcrops.

Last week the Philippines denounced Chinese Coast Gatekeeper and "volunteer army" boats of hassling two of its own coast watch vessels as they took supplies to Filipino soldiers on the Subsequent Thomas Sandbar.

The Philippine Naval force purposely grounded an old boat on the sandbar in 1999 to actually take a look at China's development in the waters.

China sends hundreds of ships to swarm reefs and patrol the South China Sea.

In the Spratly Islands, which Vietnam also claims along with the Paracel Islands, the Philippines, a longtime ally of the United States, has outposts on nine reefs and islands.

Manila says Chinese coast watchman and naval force delivers regularly block or shadow Philippine boats in the challenged waters.

When China Coast Guard vessels used water cannon against a Philippine resupply mission to the reef last month, preventing one of the boats from delivering its cargo, tensions between Manila and Beijing rose.

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