News / Asia

Top China Diplomat Travels to Vietnam for Talks to Ease Tensions

Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi, left, is greeted by a hotel executive as he arrives in Hanoi, Vietnam, June 17, 2014.
Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi, left, is greeted by a hotel executive as he arrives in Hanoi, Vietnam, June 17, 2014.
Reuters
China's top diplomat arrived in Vietnam Tuesday in a sign the two countries want to ease tensions over China's deployment of an oil rig in the disputed South China Sea, but experts said there were many obstacles to healing the ruptured relationship.
 
The visit by State Councilor Yang Jiechi, who outranks the foreign minister, will be the highest level direct contact between Beijing and Hanoi since a Chinese state oil company parked the rig in waters claimed by both countries on May 2.
 
Yang would attend an annual meeting on bilateral cooperation, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular briefing. Vietnamese officials said Yang would meet Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung as well as the head of the country's ruling communist party.
 
“We hope that Vietnam keeps its eye on the broader picture, meets China halfway and appropriately resolves the present situation,” Hua said, without directly mentioning the rig.
 
Vietnam's Foreign Ministry spokesman Le Hai Binh said the rig would be discussed.

“As we have affirmed many times, Vietnam has always been patient to look for dialogue with China to peacefully resolve the tension in the East Sea,” Binh said, referring to the South China Sea, in an AP report.

“This meeting, therefore, will surely be a channel and an event where the two sides can discuss the issue to find solutions to the current tension," Binh added.

Ties between the two neighbors have been largely frozen since early May, with both sides constantly accusing the other of inflaming the situation. Dozens of Vietnamese and Chinese coastguard and fishing vessels have repeatedly squared off around the rig, resulting in a number of collisions.
 
Olive branch

Ni Lexiong, a naval expert at the Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, said he believed China was extending an olive branch to Vietnam.
 
“Of course our country wants to avoid conflict, but can this visit really solve all of the issues?” Ni said. “It's difficult to say to what extent there will be resolutions.”
 
“Vietnam in this case went too far. It's up to them to choose not to incite conflict,” he added.

Vietnam’s former consul general to Guangzhou, China, told VOA’s Vietnamese Service that Beijing is seeking compromise through Yang’s visit.

“If it sees sense after being strongly opposed by Vietnamese people, and being criticized by the world community, it would be better to withdraw the drilling platform," said Duong Danh Dy. "It is up to them to decide. China has recently moved the rig and it appears that China is prepared for gradual de-escalation.”
 
The Haiyang Shiyou 981 rig is drilling between the Paracel Islands, which are occupied by China, and the Vietnamese coast.
 
Vietnam has said the rig is in its 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone and on its continental shelf, while China says it is operating within its waters.
 
The rig's deployment triggered anti-Chinese riots in Vietnam last month in which four people were killed during a rampage of destruction and looting of factories believed to be owned by Chinese companies. Many of the factories were Taiwanese-owned.
 
China has demanded Vietnam provide compensation for damage caused in the riots and punish those responsible.
 
Vietnam detained several hundred people in the aftermath of the violence. Around a dozen people have been tried and given jail terms of up to three years.
 
Prime Minister Dung last month said his government was considering taking legal action against China following deployment of the rig. That drew an angry response from Beijing.
 
China has said the rig will explore in the area until mid-August.
 
Beijing claims about 90 percent of the South China Sea, but parts of the potentially energy-rich waters are also subject to claims by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan.

VOA’s Vietnamese Service contributed to this report.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: So So
June 18, 2014 7:34 AM
Monroe Doctrine makes good sense.


by: So So
June 18, 2014 7:31 AM
... If gets pushed too hard VN may have to become one. A democratic VN partner of the TPP and with strong tie militarily to the US and its allies inn the region will make VN prosperous and safe.


by: So So from: US
June 18, 2014 7:03 AM
A military ally of the US in the backyard of China house is not a good thing.
If VN gets pushed too hard it may have to become one or something close to it.


by: Jonathan huang from: Canada
June 17, 2014 9:43 PM
Taiwan published the nine dash line early as 1947! Democratic Taiwan still claims the nine dash line!
PRC formally announced the sovereignty over xisha, nansha islands in 1958, and then viet PM followed by recognizing it the same year!
Util 1974, viet text books were still use the Chinese names for xisha nansha islands!
Viet is an evil, filthy liar and thief! Viet must be punished!

In Response

by: Henry Dinh from: USA
June 17, 2014 11:46 PM
China is the biggest liar of all ! and the filthy Chinese such as Huang should be so shameful of his own country as to renounce his citizenship as many righteous Chinese friends of mine have done. The more Huang talks, the more it shows his ignorance. Vietnam has always owned these islands long before the 5th century. In 1974, South Vietnam was the official owner of these islands. Show me a piece of paper that Nguyen Van Thieu agreed with Red commies on these islands!!!

China should be kicked in the butt for being so dumb!

In Response

by: Spy from: Canada
June 17, 2014 11:08 PM
Try not to get caught. Engineer and thug sent to Canada to learn from the Canadian Navy, ...


by: NG from: Canada
June 17, 2014 7:50 PM
Please note that Vietnam claimed almost all South China Sea as its own territory, and extracted and is extracting huge amounts of oil and gas from disputed South China Sea. China didn't get even one drop of oil from South China Sea so far. Plus the China oil rig is with China side in terms of South China Sea boundary (9-dash line) recognized by Vietnam in written form in 1950-1970s.


by: NG from: Canada
June 17, 2014 7:43 PM
Please remember KMT government (Taiwan), a US ally, set up 9-dash line in 1940s, and Vietnam recognized the boundary in South China Sea between China and Vietnam in written form in 1950s-1970s. The current oil rig of China is within China in terms of Vietnam-recognized boundary in 1950-1970s.

Please also remember that it is Vietnam who occupied most South China Sea islands and extracted (is extracting) huge amounts of gas and oil from South China Sea , NOT China, China didn’t get one drop of oil from South China sea so far. So it is Vietnam who bully China, a small dog is biting a big dog.
Calm down before you only blame China and before your prejudice. These Asian countries should talk and stop provocative actions, e.g. Vietnam should stop extracting gas and oil from disputed South China Sea in order to get China back to the Table. Vietnam, the aggressive small dog, should not bully China, the big dog, much if Vietnam really want to solve South China Sea issues.

Why some guys here were so easily cheated by Vietnam? Ignorance and prejudice without basic knowledge of South China Sea may be one of the reasons.


by: meanbill from: USA
June 17, 2014 12:01 PM
AS ALWAYS? -- China wants to settle all disputes by peaceful dialog, and sit down and drink tea together, and talk? -- (REMEMBER?) -- there isn't a (good lawyer) on this earth, that has ever said that China's (nine dash line) violated any "Law of the Sea" or any other laws anywhere? -- (But, Vietnam might convince China to share?)


by: So So from: US
June 17, 2014 10:01 AM
Something new, Communist China is susceptible to world opinions, (or she is pretending, may be?)

In Response

by: Ian from: USA
June 17, 2014 11:33 AM
it is just a Chinese ploy in the stealing and establishing total ownership of the sea in the middle of those South-East Asian countries

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid