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Vietnam reaffirms respect to free maritime navigation as US ship sails near Paracels

Updated at Wednesday, 09 Jan 2019, 18:24
The Hanoitimes - The respect is always given to the navigation in the sea by any country as long as the action is in accordance with the international laws.
Vietnam always asserts the respect to the freedom of maritime and air navigation in the South China Sea, the Spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang of the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said. 
 
Vietnamese spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang. Photo: Zing
Vietnamese spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang. Photo: Zing
The respect is always given to the navigation in the sea by any country as long as the action is in accordance with the international laws which stated in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1982 (UNCLOS), Hang said in responding to a question on the sailing of the United States Navy’s USS McCampbell near Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracels) in the South China Sea. 

Vietnam, on the part of the members involving in the UNCLOS, has all legal basis and historical evidences proving the sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa (Spratlys) and requires other countries to closely follow the convention to contribute to peace and security at seas and oceans worldwide, Hang emphasized. 
USS McCampbell. Photo: US Navy
USS McCampbell. Photo: US Navy
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG-85) has been reported to perform a “freedom of navigation” operation (FONOP), sailing within 12 nautical miles of the Paracel Islands. 

In a statement, the US’s Pacific Fleet Spokesperson Rachel McMarr told Reuters that the operation was conducted to challenge excessive maritime claims.

Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said that the US vessel entered China’s territorial seas without permission.
Linh Pham
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