President of the France-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarian Group Christian Poncelet has critisised China ’s placement of the Haiyang Shiyou -981 oil rig in Vietnam ’s exclusive economic zone.

In his letter sent to Vietnamese Ambassador to France Duong Chi Dung, Senator Poncelet, who was former Speaker of the French Senate, said that China ’s deed is illegal based on international law, especially the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) adopted in the 1982 Montego Bay Conference.

He affirmed the area where China has stationed its rig, is within Vietnam ’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf.

China ’s act goes against bilateral documents saying that China must respect Vietnam ’s sovereignty.

Previously, Governor of Choisy-le-Roi city in southern Paris Didier Guillaume also affirmed that China ’s move seriously violates Vietnam ’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and threaten maritime security and safety in the waters.

Expressing his support for Vietnam , he highly valued the determination and efforts of the Vietnamese Party, State and people to safeguard their national sovereignty.

Meanwhile, former mayor of France’s Montreuil city Jean-Pierre Brard said at a ceremony marking President Ho Chi Minh’s 124 th birthday that China should respect its neighbours although they are smaller.-VNA