Vietnam’s firm position is that actions taken to preserve biological resources have to be taken in accordance with relevant regulations under the United Nations Convention for the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) without compromsing the sovereignty and jurisdiction rights of other nations, Foreign Affairs Ministry deputy spokesman Doan Khac Viet said Thursday.
“Vietnam opposes and vehemently rejects China’s unilateral decision,” he said, asserting that China’s unilateral fishing ban has violated Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa (Paracel) Islands and international law, including UNCLOS.
It also goes against the spirit and letter of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties at the South China Sea (DOC) and violates agreements regarding fundamental principles on conflict resolution at sea between Vietnam and China, Viet said. The South China Sea is called the East Sea in Vietnam.
He was responding to an inquiry regarding recent information that the Chinese coast guard would implement a summer fishing ban from May 1 to September 16 in certain sea regions, including parts of the Gulf of Tonkin and Vietnam’s Paracel Islands.
Vietnam has full legal basis and historical evidence to assert its sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa (Spratly) islands in accordance with international law, Viet reiterated.
China has illegally and unilaterally announced fishing bans on even foreign fishermen, threatening that it would arrest and punish violations of the ban.