Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh has reiterated Vietnam’s strong objections to China’s deployment of a giant drilling rig into Vietnamese waters and demanded that China withdraw the rig and its protective armada immediately, Vietnam News Agency reported.
Minh, who doubles as Deputy Prime Minister, made the demand on Thursday during a telephone call with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
He stressed that China’s actions have seriously damaged the trust between the two countries and the friendship between the two peoples.
China’s actions, he said, had dually violated the relavant agreements reached by leaders in both countries as well as international law--particularly the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC).
Minh told his Chinese counterpart that Vietnam has acted with utmost restraint and good will, and had dispatched Deputy Foreign Minister Ho Xuan Son to Beijing to conduct talks with China. He demanded that China take the matter seriously and provide Vietnam with a timely and thorough response.
When discussing the recent riots in Vietnam (which damaged foreign-invested companies including Chinese ones) he said a number of people had taken advantage of peaceful protests to commit illegal acts.
The Vietnamese government has taken measures to crack down on rioters and will strictly punish them, he said, adding that Vietnam will prevent similar acts from happening in the future.
He pledged that Vietnam would make an emphatic top-down effort to protect the safety of Chinese people, investors and their businesses in Vietnam.
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