China deploys 95 vessels around illegal drilling rig
10:00 | 22/05/2014

VGP – As of May 21, China deployed 95 vessels of various kinds, including a number of big tugboats, around its drilling rig Haiyang Shiyou-981 which was installed illegally in Viet Nam’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf.

Chinese vessels always moved near ships of Vietnamese law enforcement forces and were ready to fire water cannons at or ram Vietnamese ships at any movement, according to the Viet Nam Coast Guard High Command.

Some Chinese iron fishing vessels got close to and tried to drive Vietnamese fishing boats, mostly made of wood, away from the area surrounding the drilling rig.

In the face of such aggressive and perverse acts, Viet Nam Marine Police ships tried to come near the rig at a distance of 5.5-6.5 nautical miles and persistently requested China to get its oil rig and armed ships out of Viet Nam’s waters.

In a phone talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry on May 21, Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh said that the situation in the East Sea is very tense as China kept on increasing vessels, including missile boats, fast attack crafts and amphibious landing ship.

The Deputy PM, FM affirmed that Viet Nam has exercised the utmost restraint and maintained dialogue to avoid clashes while firmly requesting China to withdraw the rig and vessels from the area, as this is a violation of Viet Nam’s sovereignty, sovereign right and jurisdiction, threatening marine stability and safety, and infringing upon the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea./.

By Thuy Dung

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