Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa has rejected some allegations given by China to vindicate its escalating actions in the East Sea.

In his interview granted to the Wall Street Journal of the US on May 20, Natalegawa said Indonesia will have stronger intervention to ease the tensions in the East Sea after China unilaterally installed an oil drilling rig in Vietnam ’s waters.

According to the Indonesian diplomat, China always intends to solve East Sea disputes bilaterally, without the engagement of third parties. However, the current tension between Vietnam and China is both a bilateral and a regional issue and ASEAN has a special responsibility to ensure that the conditions are right for the two sides to talk.

He affirmed that China’s act obviously violated the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) while Beijing often says it’s committed to implementing the declaration.

On May 2, China stationed the Haiyang Shiyou-981 oil rig at 15 degrees 29 minutes 58 seconds north latitude and 111 degrees 12 minutes 06 seconds east longitude. The location is 80 nautical miles deep inside Vietnam ’s exclusive economic zone and 119 nautical miles to Vietnam ’s Ly Son Island.

Chinese ships have repeatedly rammed and fired water cannons into Vietnamese coast guard and fisheries surveillance ships which are carrying out their law enforcement missions in the country’s waters, leaving many Vietnamese ships damaged and many fisheries surveillance officers injured.-VNA