Vietnam, China Talk Sea Areas beyond Gulf of Tonkin
|A Vietnamese Coast Guard vessel monitors fishing vessels in the waters adjacent to the Gulf of Tonkin demarcation line. Photo: VNA|
Vietnam and China held the 15th round of negotiations of the working group on the sea area beyond the mouth of the Gulf of Tonkin and the 12th round of talks of the working group for consultation on cooperation for mutual development at sea, both in the form of videoconference, on December 1.
The Vietnamese delegation was led by Trinh Duc Hai, Vice Chairman of the National Boundary Commission under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, while the Chinese side was headed by Yang Renhuo, a representative for border and maritime issues at the Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In a friendly and sincere atmosphere, the two sides exchanged opinions on the two working groups’ activities, Nhan dan (People) newspaper reported.
They had in-depth discussions on the delimitation of the sea area beyond the mouth of the Gulf of Tonkin and cooperation for mutual development at sea in accordance with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, to which both Vietnam and China are parties.
They highlighted the importance of the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership and friendly neighborliness between Vietnam and China, properly handling sea-related issues in line with the common perceptions of the countries' Party and State leaders and the "agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues between Vietnam and China" in 2011, maintaining peace and stability in the Bien Dong Sea (internationally known as South China Sea), and respecting international law.
The two sides agreed to hold new rounds of negotiations next year.
31st joint patrol at sea
|Vietnamese naval troops joining the patrol. Photo: baohaiquanvietnam.vn|
The Vietnam People’s Navy and the Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy co-held the 31st joint patrol in the Gulf of Tonkin on November 25 and 26.
Vietnamese ships 266 and 267 of the Vietnam People’s Navy and ships 627, 649 of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy joined the patrol, People’s Army newspaper said.
On this occasion, the Vietnamese and Chinese naval forces patrolled seven locations on a 276-nautical-mile voyage in the Gulf of Tonkin. During the patrol, they also conducted a search and rescue drill at sea as well as signal exchange.
The organization of the joint patrol aimed to foster neighborhood cooperation, traditional friendship, mutual understanding and trust between the two navies, maintain order and security in the shared maritime area in the Gulf of Tonkin, and share experience and promote cooperation in search and rescue at sea./.
|A vessel by the Vietnam Fisheries Resources Surveillance performs its duty at sea. Photo: VnExpress|
Vietnam and China had finished negotiations on the delimitation of areas within the mouth of the Gulf of Tonkin and signed a maritime delimitation agreement in 2000, according to VnExpress.
Experts said the Agreement on the Delimitation of the Tonkin Gulf and the Tonkin Gulf Fishery Cooperation Agreement between the two countries have determined clear boundaries and created convenient international legal framework for each to protect, manage, utilize and develop economies in their sea areas and continental shelves within the Gulf of Tonkin.
Vietnam and China began negotiations for the delimitation of sea areas beyond the mouth of the Gulf of Tonkin in 2012. They have agreed to continue the discussions twice a year.
The two sides have agreed to negotiate step-by-step, quickly perform joint surveillance, create a basis for the promotion of delimitation negotiations for sea areas beyond the mouth of the Gulf of Tonkin and cooperate to mutually develop in the area.
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