Vietnam wary of new Chinese legislation allowing weapons use

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Hanoi [Vietnam], November 6 (ANI): Vietnam’s foreign ministry has expressed concern regarding Chinese legislation, which would allow Beijing’s coast guard to use weapons in waters which it considers being under its jurisdiction, reported NHK World.

At a news conference on Thursday, a deputy spokesperson for Vietnam’s foreign ministry mentioned the names of the islands in the South China Sea that are claimed by both countries.
The spokesperson said that Vietnam’s claims on the areas are based on historical grounds.
The official further added that Vietnam supports the position that all disputes must be peacefully resolved in accordance with international law.
According to NHK World, the draft legislation released by China on Wednesday would allow China’s coast guard to use arms in waters China considers to be under its jurisdiction if foreign ships conduct operations there that Beijing deems illegal, and if foreign vessels defy orders to stop.
The draft also calls for measures to safeguard artificial islands and facilities. The provision is believed to be referring to islands China has been militarising in the South China Sea.
In April, a Vietnamese fishing boat sank near the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. While Vietnam alleged that the ship was rammed and sunk by a Chinese maritime surveillance vessel, China maintained that the vessel was fishing illegally in the area and refused to leave.
At the same time, Vietnam had also lodged a protest against China’s announcement of the establishment of two new administrative districts, Paracel Islands and the Spratly Islands, in the South China Sea.
China claims most of the sea, often invoking its so-called nine-dash line to justify its alleged historic rights to the key waterway, which is also contested by the Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Brunei. It rejected a 2016 UN-backed tribunal’s ruling that its claims were without legal basis. (ANI)
Beijing’s rising assertiveness against counter claimants in the East and South Sea has resulted in unprecedented agreement across the Indian-Pacific. (ANI)