News / Asia

    Vietnam, China Trade Barbs Over Oil Rig Dispute

    In this photo released by Vietnam Coast Guard, a Chinese ship (L) shoots a water cannon at a Vietnamese vessel (R) while a Chinese Coast Guard ship (C) sails alongside in the South China Sea, off Vietnam's coast,  May 7, 2014.
    In this photo released by Vietnam Coast Guard, a Chinese ship (L) shoots a water cannon at a Vietnamese vessel (R) while a Chinese Coast Guard ship (C) sails alongside in the South China Sea, off Vietnam's coast, May 7, 2014.
    Marianne Brown
    A day after Vietnamese and Chinese vessels were reported sparring near a Chinese oil rig in disputed waters in the South China Sea, Beijing said Vietnam continues to send ships to the area, threatening Chinese personnel.

    Vietnam’s government made no official statements about the standoff near the Chinese oil rig Thursday, but the country’s state-controlled media provided extensive coverage.

    “Vietnam will hit back if Chinese vessels continue ramming Vietnamese ships,” the front page of one of the most popular newspapers Tuoi Tre said.
     
    Click to enlargeClick to enlarge
    x
    Click to enlarge
    Click to enlarge

    Many newspapers highlighted coverage of the spat in international media, laying emphasis on perceived Chinese aggression and Vietnam’s sovereignty claims over the islands.

    In Beijing, Vice Foreign Minister Cheng Guoping tried to play down the incident, insisting it was not a “clash” and the countries should be able to resolve it through negotiations.

    Cheng said the two sides are friendly neighbors and friendly cooperation is in the fundamental interests of both countries.

    'Shocked' by Vietnam

    But Yi Xianliang, deputy director general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, later told reporters in a special briefing in Beijing that authorities were “shocked” by the Vietnamese behavior and Chinese vessels are taking measures to protect themselves.

    Yi said Vietnam has been sending additional vessels to the scene and it has constituted a threat to Chinese personnel.  He said Beijing needs to have a certain level of force to guarantee the smooth operation of the Chinese oil rig.

    China announced just last week that it had placed the state-run oil rig near the Paracel Islands, 220 kilometers from Vietnam's shores, an area Hanoi claims as its exclusive economic zone. China asserted the operation is clearly within its territorial waters.

    The $1 billion rig is owned by China's state-run CNOOC oil company.

    In Washington Wednesday, the State Department said China’s decision to send the oil rig into the disputed waters “is provocative and raises tensions.”

    During a visit to Hanoi Thursday, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Russel urged both sides to "refrain from unilateral actions,” adding the global economy is "too fragile to brook the possibility of a crisis that could escalate into conflict."

    "Every country has the right to advocate for its position and for its claims to territorial sovereignty. However, the consistent position of the U.S. is that advocacy must be diplomatic and the means for advancing one's claims must be consistent with international law, including the U.N. convention on the law of the sea," Russel said.

    Onus is on China

    He said the onus is on China to define its claims in a manner that’s consistent with the convention. He said the Vietnamese officials with whom he discussed the issue accepted that the U.S. does not take a position on the relative merits of the sovereignty claims.

    “There was no suggestion in any of my meetings on either side on a role for the U.S. military. Had there been one, I would have emphasized the points made by the State Department spokesperson that these issues must be addressed peacefully and in accordance with international law,” Russel said.

    In addition to Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines also have territorial disputes with Beijing in the oil-rich and strategic South China Sea. The rival claimants accuse China of using increasingly aggressive tactics to defend its territory.

    You May Like

    Turkey, West in Standoff Over Syrian Refugees

    Turkish government refuses to admit refugees, the first in a wave of civilians fleeing offensive by Assad regime in northern Aleppo countryside

    Jailed American Testifies About Islamist Involvement in Mumbai Attacks

    David Headley testifies via video link that Pakistan-based Islamic terror group made two failed attempts to mount strikes in Mumbai in months prior to coordinated assault

    These Are the 10 Smartest US States

    A new report breaks down the nation's best and brightest

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments page of 2
        Next 
    by: Huy Huynh from: Canada
    May 13, 2014 11:00 AM
    Long ago the person who established the south- east map have mistaken cited that sea is "South China Sea" and not "East Sea or West sea". That is now reason for China to become legally greedy. I hope this would be the lesson for dictate any individual country on the map. China is growing and dominating starting from SouthEast Asia. They're ready for war. Are Vietnameses ? Fight we died in honor. Don't fight we shall die in slavery. Bring it on...

    by: oldlamb from: Guangzhou
    May 11, 2014 7:16 AM
    Without US’s inciting,without any provocation from Japan and Philippines,and so on.including in the East China sea and the South China Sea.With the growing of Chinese economy and military strength, As is Known no country could own the competence of confrontation to face China 40 years later,regardless of which it invovled,Japan,Philippines or US .They have to contain China’s development as soon as possible.The USA need Japannese help,They have staged a range of farces in the East China sea and the South China Sea recent years.For example,in 2012,Japan government was incited to bought Diaoyu island by US’ government where China and Japan government had agreed to lay aside the controversial island since 1970s.On the pretext of the threat from China,Japan government is going for the right of collective self-defence that it is forbided by Japanese constitution now.
    Philippines government is doing the same now.When Philippines marine serveillance ships shot Chinese fishmen, the US’ submarine is following.
    This a range of farces was called Untie Watchdogs that allow the watchdogs bite China and provocate China. What if China could not restraint himself,and retaliate to Japan or Philipines?The three countries will stand togather to against China and weaken China as soon as posible.Because they all believe that China could not win their three now. It is the first step of Asia rebalance.

    by: aman from: The Earth
    May 10, 2014 9:51 PM
    One Chinese South China Sea researcher Mr.Li Ling Hua said : " Throughout history of the world, there is no unreal national border on the land nor on the sea. The 9-dashed line in South China Sea is unreal. We-China had drawn the 9-dashed line with no specific longitude and latitude and legal basic".
    Let's discuss this statement

    by: Mark from: Virginia
    May 10, 2014 5:54 PM
    for all our supposed intellect and wisdom, we, as human beings are still a flawed species. While we have done away with the claws and fangs of our forebears (if you believe in such stuff) we are still predators at heart. We are savages still, the only predator species that preys even on itself. No other species in the animal kingdom kills its own kind with such reckless abandon.
    No matter how kind and giving we say we are, we are all still greedy little bastards deep down inside. No matter how old and mature we think we are, we still cannot 'play' nice with each other and share.
    Apes in the jungle are probably facepalming themselves and thinking..."you humans embarrass us."

    by: Ivy Huynh from: Vietnam
    May 10, 2014 2:00 PM
    Dear all my friends in over the world, today I listened to the song 'Heal the World. How much it hurted when I heard the sentence 'heal the world, makes it a better place, 4 u n 4 me n the entire human race'. How can it come true when there is still have a part of human race doesn't want that, they just wanna be the world's leader, not the same level as us. So, there are no laws, no right, nothing can prevent that just because they're rich, large n have modern weapon???

    by: Vu from: Vietnam
    May 10, 2014 2:36 AM
    The VC and china used to be brothers fight against USA. Why are chinese eating their brothers' lunch now?

    I hate dirty, greedy chinese.
    In Response

    by: Jessie from: PRC
    May 10, 2014 9:21 PM
    Nonsense!U know nothing about China!U r cheated by VOA~a big liar~~lol

    by: David Kent from: St Augustine, FL
    May 09, 2014 11:29 PM
    I'm having a hard time believing that there are so many purported comments from people in the US using such stilted and improper English. What's up?

    by: It_is_true? from: Earth
    May 09, 2014 7:18 PM
    Chinese promised the world 6 wars in the future to realize the chinese dream. They already got the 7th for free from the Uigurs.

    Histories shows the Vietnamese can beat them bloody. China is big but weak, bc the chinese are not patriots like the Vietnamese (see WWII, how easily small Japan was take over China). Imagine, 14 Chinese fight against one Japanese and China lost catastrophic. It is the same with in 1979. Chinese have big mouth and big army and off course it scares the people. But if war break out. No chinese will joints. based on one child policy, no one will go to war and the gov. will have a hard time to force them (chinese tradition since ancient time). BTW, it is not a first time we have war with "big" china. In 1979 a lot of chinese soldiers, they just shoot in their own feet, so they don't have to fight and got kill. It will happen this time the same.

    Most stupid and arrogant comments we hear are from the Chinese in the west. They come here and try to get asap US or Canada citizenship and have a good life in cleaner, friendlier environment, but most of them support still the chinese evil gov.
    Do you think, these people will go to wars for China?
    ===> Vietnam will win big again. This time, don't let them withdraw like the last time. kill so much if you can, so they can rember it and you can have a longer peace period with them.

    by: ChineseVietnameseAmerican from: Boston
    May 09, 2014 10:39 AM
    The only good communists are the dead communists. We are not taking side. So, we will just let the commies settle things between themselves. A world with fewer commies is a better world for mankind.

    by: INFOME from: USA
    May 09, 2014 9:46 AM
    China has always been a bully. Please boycott Chinese goods because every dollar you spend on Chinese products, you're supplying them another bullet which they will use to shoot your own people. Death the China's expansionism!
    Comments page of 2
        Next 

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.