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Official says Vietnam preparing to sue China over illegal oil rig

The Vietnamese Government is preparing materials and evidence for a lawsuit against China if it refuses to remove its drilling rig from the Vietnamese waters, Nguyen Hanh Phuc, chairman of the National Assembly’s Office said Saturday.

Chairman of the National Assembly’s Office Nguyen Hanh Phuc
 talks to reporters in Hanoi May 24, 2014

The National Assembly has heard a report of the Government about the situation in the East Sea and possible solutions to it, Phuc told reporters on the sidelines of the ongoing National Assembly’s session in Hanoi about the East Vietnam Sea situation, which has become tense since China planted its oil rig Haiyang Shiyou on May 1.

Upon hearing the report, the NA announced its stance in response to China’s oil rig deployment in the Vietnamese waters in the East Vietnam Sea.

“Accordingly, we continue protesting China for its wrongful acts and at the same time using peaceful measures based on international law to demand that China remove the rig from Vietnamese waters,” Phuc said.

“We are consolidating materials and evidence to sue China to an international court in case China refuses to follow our request,” he added.

Asked by reporters whether he is confident that Vietnam will win if a lawsuit is really lodged, Phuc said he believes in the Vietnam’s fight for justice and the historical and legal evidence Vietnam has obtained to prove its sovereignty over its seas and islands.

As earlier reported by NA chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung, the East Vietnam Sea situation has become complicated and unforeseeable due to the above wrongful acts by China, Phuc said.

Phuc also rejected a rumor that the NA will send a delegation to China to work on the East Vietnam Sea issue.

“There are no such plans,” he told reporters. “The NA is busying with its ongoing session.”

When asked for a comment about Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s recent answers to international media regarding the oil rig tension, Phuc said he totally agrees to the PM’s viewpoint.

The Vietnamese premier told AP that independence, self-reliance, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and maritime zones are sacred to Vietnam, and the country “will never trade them off for some kind of elusive, dependent peace and friendship.”

“I think that it’s time for China to change in analyzing the current situation.

“How will the world see a country that has committed such behaviors?” Phuc said.

“China should act in such a way that keeps it away from being isolated by the world,” he pressed.

A reporter asked Phuc if there have been many deputies who requested that the NA issue a resolution on the East Vietnam Sea situation, and Phu replied that whether such a resolution is issued depends on developments of the situation.

Phuc also said the NA has extended thanks to parliaments of many countries, individuals and international organizations for their support for Vietnam’s demand for China’s removal of its oil rig and escort ships from the Vietnamese waters immediately.

Source: Tuoi Tre News

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