Vietnam, China pledge to address and control maritime differences


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PM Nguyen Tan Dung (L) and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang meet on the sidelines of the ASEM 10 in Milan.
Vietnam and China have agreed to "address and control" maritime disputes in the potentially-rich East Sea, also known as South China Sea, Vietnam's state news agency reported Thursday.
The two countries should properly address and control maritime differences and not complicate the situation further, VNA quoted Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung as saying to his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Milan Thursday.
China's illegal deployment of a US$1-billion oil rig in Vietnam's exclusive economic zone in the East Sea earlier this year caused tension between the two nations.
Dung called for the two neighbors to abide by the bilaterally agreed guiding principles on solving maritimes differences and respect international law to maintain peace and stability in the region. 
The two countries should also maintain high-level meetings to improve trust, Dung said.
The comments were a reiteration of earlier pledges by leaders from the two countries.
China claims almost the entire South China Sea, believed to be rich in deposits of oil and gas resources. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam also have claims in the waters where $5 trillion of ship-borne goods pass every year.

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