Respect Vietnam's sovereignty, fashion brands told

By Ngoc Anh   April 8, 2021 | 03:30 am PT
Respect Vietnam's sovereignty, fashion brands told
An aerial view of Ba Binh, or Itu Aba Island, part of Vietnam's Spratly Islands, November 29, 2016. Photo by Reuters/Fabian Hamacher.
Vietnam has slammed fashion brands that have used maps with China's infamous and illegal nine-dash line in their promotion material and asked them to stop it.

"All propaganda forms and content promotion that go against historical facts and international law hold no value and cannot change the fact of Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracel) islands," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang said Thursday.

Hang was responding to inquiries about fashion brands recently found using maps with the nine-dash line on their websites in China.

The line has been used by China to illegally claim huge swathes of the South China Sea, known in Vietnam as the East Sea. It has been internationally condemned and rejected.

Vietnam has repeatedly affirmed that it has full legal basis and historical evidence to assert its sovereignty over the Paracel and Spratly islands in the East Sea in accordance with international law as well as its sovereignty, sovereignty rights and jurisdiction rights over relevant sea areas as established by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

"Vietnam requests that businesses respect Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Spratly and Paracel islands as well as its sovereignty, sovereignty rights and jurisdiction rights over relevant sea areas in the East Sea," Hang said, adding that businesses operating in Vietnam need to respect Vietnamese law.

Certain businesses, including fashion brands, have been found using Chinese online map service Baidu on their website in China. The map showing the nine-dash line is not used in websites outside China, however.

A 2016 ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) rejected the nine-dash line by China, saying it has no legal grounds to make such claims.

But China has not recognized the PCA’s ruling and has continued to break international laws, creating illegal artificial islands, among other actions in attempts to back up its illegal and false sea territory claims.

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