Chinese oil survey vessel leaves Vietnamese waters

By Viet Anh   August 8, 2019 | 01:31 am PT
Chinese oil survey vessel leaves Vietnamese waters
Chinese vessel Haiyang Dizhi 8 operates near Chinese shore in 2018. Photo courtesy of Schottel.
A Chinese oil survey vessel and its escorts that have infringed on Vietnamese exclusive economic zone (EEZ) since early July left on Wednesday.

"In the afternoon of August 7, the Haiyang Dizhi 8 survey vessel stopped its survey activities and left Vietnam's exclusive economic zone and southeastern continental shelf," Foreign Ministry's spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang told a news conference on Thursday.

"Vietnamese authorities are keeping watch on the situation," she said.

"Vietnam requests that countries respect the sovereignty and jurisdiction rights of other countries, and expresses its goodwill for negotiations to resolve disputes and boost friendship, cooperation."

Last month, China sent the oil survey vessel and escorts into the southern area of the East Sea, internationally known as the South China Sea, infringing on Vietnam’s EEZ and continental shelf.

Hang said earlier that Vietnam has employed different diplomatic methods, including sending diplomatic notes to China, to protest China’s actions and demand that the vessels leave Vietnamese waters.

Concerns over South China Sea issues had cast a shadow over the 52nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting held in Bangkok, Thailand, between July 29 and August 3.

Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh denounced China's oil survey activities at the ASEAN meeting, calling them illegal and serious violations of Vietnam's sovereignty and jurisdiction rights.

He also reasserted that Vietnam has full historical and legal basis to assert its sovereignty over the Paracel (Hoang Sa) and Spratly (Truong Sa) Islands.

The South China Sea issue has also garnered international attention, with countries including the U.S., Japan and other ASEAN members expressing concerns.

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