Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung shakes hands with Philippine President Benigno S.Aquino III at a joint press conference in Manila on May 21. PHOTO: ANH VU
Vietnam and the Philippines are determined to oppose China’s actions in the East Sea, internationally known as the South China Sea, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung told the press following a meeting with President Benigno S.Aquino III in Manila on Wednesday.
Dung also called on the international community to raise their voices to demand that China immediately cease its violations.
The Vietnamese premier travelled to the Philippine capital to attend the World Economic Forum on East Asia (WEF-EA), but the most highly anticipated item on his itinerary was his meeting with Aquino.
The pair spent an hour discussing measures to boost bilateral ties in various areas and their nations' territorial disputes with China, they noted, during a joint press conference organized after their one-hour talk.
Dung told reporters that he and Aquino shared deep concerns over the "extremely dangerous" situation China created by flagrantly violating the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and threatening the maritime sovereignty of coastal countries.
He cited Beijing’s deployment of a US$1-billion oil rig and a martial armada over Vietnam’s continental shelf and deep inside its exclusive economic zone.
Dung said the move has seriously threatened peace, stability, maritime security and the freedom of navigation in the East Sea.
He also called on the international community to demand that China end its violations.
Vietnam's PM said China must “strictly obey international law, the UNCLOS and the Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, and make efforts for the early achievement of the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea.”
For his part, Aquino said the meeting with Dung clarified how Vietnam and the Philippines could “enhance confidence building, our defense capabilities, and interoperability in addressing security challenges.”
Aquino said that “continued cooperation between the Philippines and Vietnam will enable us to better protect our maritime resources.”
“I believe that continued cooperation with Vietnam, as well as with other members of ASEAN, in defense and security will only contribute to promoting regional stability,” he said.
“I'm not exaggerating when I say that I look forward to the increased collaboration between our respective defense agencies. Might I also add that both our nations are looking forward to jointly determining the prerequisites in forging a road map towards a strategic partnership.”
PM Dung and President Aquino also agreed to continue boosting economic, trade and investment relations with a view to bringing two-way trade to US$3 billion by 2016.
The two sides will seek to create favorable conditions to create businesses opportunities, strengthen economic connectivity and ensure food security.
In addition to cooperation in finance, banking and services, they will encourage the expansion of relations in other fields like culture, education, health, science-technology, and tourism.
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