Vietnam “resolutely opposes” China’s illegal construction projects on the Chu Thap (Fiery Cross) Reef of Truong Sa (Spratly) Islands and demands that China stop the construction immediately, the foreign ministry said Thursday.
Vietnam also asks China to refrain from carrying out such illegal activities in the future on the Spratly Islands, foreign ministry spokesman Le Hai Binh said.
Chinese media reported in mid-October that the country decided to build an airfield on Fiery Cross Reef, and land reclamation work was under way.
“Vietnam has full legal and historical evidence proving its sovereignty over the two archipelagos of Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly),” Binh stressed.
China’s construction projects seriously violate Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Spratly Islands, infringe international law and run counter to the Declaration on the Conduct (DoC) of Parties in the East Sea (South China Sea), as well as the agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues between the two countries, he said.
They upset the status quo, cause tensions and complicate the situation further, harming peace and stability in the region, Binh said.
“Vietnam … demands the Chinese side respect its sovereignty and strictly observe the DOC,” Binh said.
That same day, representatives of the Foreign Ministry met with representatives of the Chinese Embassy in Hanoi to present the note of opposition.