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Vietnam protests over Chinese military drill in South China Sea

01 Septembre 2017

China urged Vietnam on Friday to take a calm and rational view of its military drills in the South China Sea, after Vietnam expressed opposition, as tension between the neighbors worsens over the disputed strategic waterway.

Tension between China and neighboring Vietnam is at its highest in three years over the disputed waters.

Vietnam suspended oil drilling in offshore waters that are also claimed by China in July under pressure from Beijing.

"Vietnam proposes China to cease and refrain from repeating acts that complicate the situation in the East Sea (South China Sea)", Hang said, adding all foreign activities in Vietnamese waters must be comply with Vietnamese and global laws.

All foreign activities in Vietnamese waters must comply with Vietnamese and worldwide laws, she added.

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Yesterday (August 31) a statement was given by foreign ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang, saying Vietnam was anxious about exercises taking place in the Gulf of Tonkin area however it was not clear which exact drills she was talking about, according to Reuters.

China's Foreign Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment outside of business hours and it was not immediately clear which drills the Vietnamese statement was referring to.

"The relevant sea is under China's jurisdiction", she told a daily news briefing on Friday, adding that China had the right to carry out such drills in the waters there. "We hope the relevant side can calmly and rationally view it".

But last month the Maritime Safety Administration of the Chinese province Hainan said there will be live fire drills near the Paracel Islands which are owned by Vietnam.

The DFA secretary noted that the practical cooperation between Asean and China in the South China Sea has been steadily improving over the a year ago. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Taiwan also have claims.

Vietnam protests over Chinese military drill in South China Sea