The Viet Nam Lawyers' Association yesterday spoke out against Chinese vessels cutting the seismic survey cables of a Vietnamese ship operating in Viet Nam's exclusive economic zone on May 26.
The three Chinese marine surveillance vessels cut the cables of the seismic survey ship Binh Minh 02 while it was operating deep within the sea zone over which Viet Nam holds exclusive rights regarding exploration and use of marine resources.
China's actions seriously violated the United Nations Charter (Article 2 of Clause 3 and Article 2 of Clause 4) and the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea signed in 1982, according to the association.
"It has also violated Viet Nam's sovereign jurisdiction over its exclusive economic zone and continental shelf," it added.
Cutting the survey ship's cables went against the Declaration of Conduct of parties in the East Sea that China signed in 2002 as well as Viet Nam-Chinese relations.
The association called on China to comply with the UN framework of which China is part, relevant international laws and its commitment to the Declaration of Conduct.
China was also called upon to desist from acting similarly in future as well as to provide compensation for the losses that the Viet Nam Oil and Gas Group, the owner of the Binh Minh 02 ship, had suffered.
The association hoped to boost the friendship and co-operation between Viet Nam and China in maintaining and keeping to international laws with respect to sovereignty while upholding and promoting peace throughout the region and the world.
A small number of people spontaneously gathered in front of the Chinese Embassy in Ha Noi and its Consulate in HCM City yesterday morning to demonstrate their discontent at foreign violations of Viet Nam's sovereignty.
The gatherings were in opposition to Chinese marine surveillance vessels cutting the cables of the Vietnamese seismic survey ship, Binh Minh 02, on May 26 while it operated within Viet Nam's exclusive economic zone.
Participants said that the Chinese vessels had violated Vietnamese sovereign jurisdiction over its exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration of Conduct signed between China and ASEAN countries.
The peaceful gatherings soon dissolved after persuasive efforts by Government officials. — VNS