Vietnam vexed over Taiwan’s ‘worthless’ media trip to island


An aerial photo taken though a glass window of a Taiwanese military plane shows the view of Itu Aba, which the Taiwanese call Taiping, at the South China Sea, March 23, 2016. REUTERS/Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Handout via Reuters

An aerial photo taken though a glass window of a Taiwanese military plane shows the view of Itu Aba, which the Taiwanese call Taiping, at the South China Sea, March 23, 2016. REUTERS/Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Handout via Reuters

Vietnam rebuked Taiwan on Thursday for taking journalists to a disputed South China Sea island, saying the trip was “illegal and worthless” and against the international community’s wishes.

The foreign ministry’s comment on Wednesday’s trip, the first by international media to the Spratly archipelago’s Itu Aba island, was an unusually fast response by Vietnam, which often takes days to raise objections about territorial disputes.

Vietnam, Taiwan, China, Malaysia, the Philippines and Brunei have competing claims to the Spratly islands.

“Taiwan sending reporters … despite concerns and objections of Vietnam and the international community, is a serious violation of Vietnam’s sovereignty, escalating tension and with no benefit to peace and stability,” the ministry’s spokesman, Le Hai Binh, said in a statement.

Binh said Vietnam had sufficient evidence to prove it had jurisdiction of the Spratlys and activities undertaken without its permission were “illegal and worthless”.

“We resolutely oppose and demand Taiwan respects Vietnam’s sovereignty,” he said.

Itu Aba is coming into focus as the Philippines challenges the legality of China’s claims to most of the South China Sea, which it asserts through a controversial and largely unexplained nine-dash line on its maps.

The media trip was part of a Taiwanese propaganda campaign on Itu Aba, which also included a high-profile visit by President Ma Ying-jeou in January.

(Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Writing by Martin Petty)

Source: Reuters “Vietnam vexed over Taiwan’s ‘worthless’ media trip to island”


3 Comments on “Vietnam vexed over Taiwan’s ‘worthless’ media trip to island”

  1. Joseph says:

    The only way the US would have case for Phillipines’ SCS claims is to promote Taiwan-style island management as it is the only large non-artificial island. But to promote Taiwan-style island management woud nullify Vietnam’s claim as their islands are all artificial. In the past, to give Vietnam advantage of claim against China, the US would recognize artificial island as true island. But now China build bigger artificial islands too, which the US refuses to recognize. To refuse China’s artificial island claim would withdraw its recognition for Vietnam’s artificial island, thus giving Taiwan the only party that has US-suitable claim and making Vietnam really pissed. In the end, the US attempt to incite conflict between China and its neighbors would turn the region into chaos like maritime Syria, where rival proxies would be at each other throats. After Vietnam extends conflict with Taiwan, it won’t be long before Vietnam would extend it to Phillipines too. Meanwhile, the Phillipines has already uneasy truces with Taiwan over the shooting death of Taiwan’s fisherman by Phillipines coast guard, and with Malaysia over Philippines ‘historical’ SCS claim over the territory of the now-extinct Palawan kingdom.

    Like

    • Fu Man-Chu says:

      Jolly good insight. Just goes to show the inconsistent and hypocritical stances of Washington with regard to its SCS foreign policy issues.

      Like

  2. Steve says:

    Let’s hope All ends well for China and Taiwan. By the way, the airstrip don’t look right dividing the island into two parts and using too much land. Imagine having to cross a highway to get across the other side. Should have reclaim land along side the island and build the runway.

    Like


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