News / Asia

Vietnam Urges 'Practical US Actions' in S. China Sea

A Vietnamese sinking boat (L), which was rammed and then sunk by Chinese vessels near disputed Paracels Islands, is seen near a Marine Guard ship (R) at Ly Son island of Vietnam's central Quang Ngai province, May 29, 2014.
A Vietnamese sinking boat (L), which was rammed and then sunk by Chinese vessels near disputed Paracels Islands, is seen near a Marine Guard ship (R) at Ly Son island of Vietnam's central Quang Ngai province, May 29, 2014.
Vietnam is calling on the United States to take a larger role in protecting the peace and settling conflicts in the disputed waters of the South China Sea.

A foreign ministry spokesman in Hanoi, Le Hai Binh, said Friday, "We hope that the U.S. will have a stronger voice and make further practical acts to contribute to protecting maritime safety and security in the region and resolving the disputes there in accordance with international law.”

The Vietnamese call for more U.S. involvement comes as Vietnamese ships continue to clash with Chinese ships near a controversial oil rig that Beijing placed in disputed waters last month.

In an interview with VOA's Vietnamese service Friday, Captain Le Van Xinh, whose fishing vessel has ventured into the area near the oil rig, described a scene of escalating dangers to boats like his. He also called for dialogue between Hanoi and Beijing.

"We’d like to see the two countries, Vietnam and China, come up with peaceful resolutions through talks so that we, the fishermen, will be able to operate without fear within our own waters," said Le Van Xinh. "We’d like to ask Hanoi to try to protect our sovereignty so that we would be able to keep working on our traditional fishing areas to earn our living."

According to Vietnamese officials, Chinese ships have sunk one of its ships and damaged 24 others, as well as injured 12 members of its fisheries surveillance force. But China accuses Vietnamese ships of being the aggressors, saying they have rammed Chinese ships 120 times since early May.

The U.S. has said it does not take sides in the dispute and wants countries in the region to settle their differences peacefully.

At a recent military forum in Singapore, though, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said “China has undertaken destabilizing, unilateral actions asserting its claims in the South China Sea.”

Last year, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced the U.S. would provide about $18 million to help Vietnam patrol its territorial waters.

When asked recently about the prospect for further U.S. military support for Hanoi, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State of Human Rights, Tom Malinowski said the relationship will improve as Vietnam's human rights record improves.

"Vietnam is a relatively small country with a very large neighbor. And Vietnam needs international law. It needs to be part of a community that is based on respect for a common set of rules that are broadly understood and broadly respected. And part of the bargain is that there are other rules and laws, including those that protect individuals," said Malinowski.

China's territorial claims in the South China Sea overlap with those of Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Vietnamese service.

You May Like

Syrian Rebels Poised for Anti-Russia Collaboration

Forty-one insurgent groups issue joint statement vowing retaliation for Russian air offensives More

Political Maneuver Revives Export-Import Bank's Chances

Parliamentary tactic gets bill out of committee, but it faces opposition in the Senate More

Beijing Warns US on S. China Sea Patrols

Warning follows news reports Thursday that US military is planning to sail warships close to artificial islands Beijing has been aggressively building More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 5
 Previous   Next 
by: Kuteo from: Quebec
June 08, 2014 1:42 PM
The Communist Vietnam will die alone this time for sure.
The Uncle Sam will sale weapon for Vietnam, part of business.
If the war truly will happen the US make $$$$$$$$ by sale weapon.

by: Young thing from: nowhere
June 08, 2014 12:15 PM
washing linen in public will never resolve anything in a difficult situation.

by: Adam9 from: Dong Nai, VN
June 08, 2014 11:31 AM
Ah! Sending Jane Fonda to Vietnam? What a lovely idea!
Just picture this:
-Ms. Jane Fonda herself on a fishing boat with a bunch of her Vietnamese friends, at a safe distance away from the Chinese ships and a loudspeaker over her mouth, screams:
… Ahoy there, you big bully, you! Go home! Stop bothering my friends!
That would really be something!!!

by: Michael o Williams from: Guyana
June 08, 2014 10:39 AM
Is it the case that Vietnam has lost memories of History? Why the urgency ,and the begging for more of the US involvement in Asia;more so in practical ways? Such involvement would not be good for Peace,Prosperity and security in Asia .

by: meanbill from: USA
June 08, 2014 10:26 AM
AN UNDENIABLE FACT? -- The US and China are signatures of the (UNCLOS) the "UN Convention of the Law of the Sea" -- (BUT?) -- the US didn't ratify the (UNCLOS), and China opted out under Article (298) of those rules, that didn't satisfy their claims. -- (FACT?) -- Since 1947 when the US arbitrarily moved it's (EEZ) 200 nautical miles from it's continental shelf, -- (USING US RULES?) -- China arbitrarily claimed their (EEZ) on the "Nine Dash Line" in 1947 .. using ancient centuries old territorial records and maps....

FACTUAL FACTS? --- The (UNCLOS) or the "UN Convention on the Law of the Sea" is a hodgepodge of rules and regulations, and the "Nine Dash Line" was established long before the (UNCLOS). -- (FACT?) -- There are no set legal rules or regulations governing "The Law of the Sea" and the US and China wouldn't be bound by any of them, if there were? ..... REALLY

by: Hoang Van Bao from: Lam Dong, Viet Nam
June 08, 2014 7:53 AM
On the eve of the 25th anniversary of the end of Vietnam War, April 29, 2000, Senator John McCain of the US said to the news people:
"I think that the wrong guys won, I think that they lost millions of their best people who left by boat, thousands by execution and hundreds of thousands who went to re-education camps."
Almost 40 years have gone by, 80% of the people in Vietnam are still poor while members of the Communist Party of Vietnam are very rich. All levels of government officials are corrupted. All media outlets (TV stations, printed newspapers,) … are owned or controlled by the government of Vietnam. Decisions on national policies are made by the 16 members of the politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam. Over all, the so called government is not really a government; it is just a collection of members of the Communist Party of Vietnam in charge of carrying out policies of the Communist Party of Vietnam. The people of Vietnam in Vietnam have no voice in how the country should be run or do with any political matter; in effect, the country is being run (and ruined) by this HUGE political party called the Communist Party of Vietnam.
This collection of rulers of Vietnam is one of the most oppressive regime on the face of the earth today; a merely mention of the term “Cong an” (the regime's police) can instill a cold feeling of fearful to the spine of any normal Vietnamese person in Vietnam today.

by: Panha from: El Centro Ca92243
June 08, 2014 4:19 AM
The French loosing face in Vietnam,China got rip off by Vietnam, Russia bankrupt because back Vietnam,USA walked away from Vietnam,I do not expect my president will help to support the cheaters and ungrateful like Vietnam or WE'll get cheated by Vietnam as the second time? Let them fight each others and we'll help after they are exhausted.

by: Full metal
June 08, 2014 4:13 AM
Thousands of american men were forced to go fight and die in Vietnam for democracy.
Vietnam wanted to be communist.
You got what you wanted, and now you come crawling to america for help, it looks pathetic.

by: Kim Dung from: Saigon
June 07, 2014 10:48 PM
I nominate and support Cu Huy Ha Vu for the office of presidency of a democratic Vietnam.

by: We just fade away
June 07, 2014 10:09 PM
@OldDog from: MD - Suggestion please!
You may want to send John Kerry to Beijing too. He may be able to organize some kind of "anti-aggressive behavior" campaign there. A few loud noise and medals throwing demonstrations against the Chinese government in the streets of Beijing ought to be helpful to the Vietcong too.
Comments page of 5
 Previous   Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdrawsi
Jim Malone
October 09, 2015 12:32 AM
The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdraws

The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video German, US Officials Investigate Volkswagen

German officials have taken steps to restore some of the reputation their car industry has lost after a recent Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal. Authorities have searched Volkswagen headquarters and other locations in an effort to identify the culprits in the creation of software that helps cheat on emission tests. Meanwhile, a group of lawmakers in Washington held a hearing to get to the bottom of the cheating strategy that was first discovered in the United States. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Why Are Gun Laws So Hard for Congress to Tackle?

Since taking office, President Barack Obama has spoken out or issued statements about 15 mass shootings. The most recent shooting, in which 10 people were killed at a community college, sparked outrage over the nation's gun laws. But changing those laws isn't as easy as many think. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

VOA Blogs