Int’l community calls for peaceful settlement of East Sea issue

An international conference on security and cooperation in the East Sea was held in Moscow, Russia on October 18.
An international conference on security and cooperation in the East Sea was held in Moscow, Russia on October 18.

The conference, the first of its kind held by the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, drew the participation of representatives from Russian authorities and researchers of issues on Asia-Pacific and East Sea security, as well as scholars from the EU, the US, Australia, India, Japan and Singapore.

Delegates analysed the East Sea issue from the angles of geo-politics, historical and legal bases of territorial disputes and threats to regional stability, and proposed solutions to the current conflicts.

Addressing the one-day event, Alexander Tokovinin, an official from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, called on concerned parties to refrain from the use of force and to resolve the issue by political-diplomatic means on the basis of the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Russia, as an Asian-European country, is interested in maintaining peace and stability in the region, he said, adding that the country wants to join partners to set up a reliable common security structure in Asia and is actively accelerating this process.

Vice Chairman of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation Nikolai Levichev voiced his concern about the risk of an East Sea conflict in the a future, stressing that what the parties concerned need to do now is to prevent tension from escalating.

He spoke highly of the role of international and Russian experts at the conference who helped clarify the security situation in the East Sea and seek solutions to the regional disputes and contradictions.

Meanwhile, Director of the Institute of Oriental Studies Vitaly Naumkin stated that Asia security is a big issue that draws attention from the international community, including Russia.

Russia wishes that the concerned parties will work together to overcome challenges in order to create an environment of peace, friendship and cooperation in the region, he said.

Participants agreed that Vietnam has manifested its constructive stance of consistently supporting the settlement of disputes by peaceful means and persistently calling on parties concerned to build a unified roadmap of higher legal value to solve the disputes such as the approval of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

Vietnam’s timely recommendation on eliminating the use of violence in dealing with conflicts and efforts to reach a peaceful and friendship environment and mutual trust, stated by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung at the 12 th Shangri-la Dialogue in June, also received a high consensus from participants.

International researchers stressed that peace and stability can only be ensured on the basis of all concerned parties’ efforts and goodwill, in which mutual trust, concession and commitment to restraint from the use of force in all circumstances play an extremely important role.

All disputes in the East Sea must be settled through peaceful negotiations in the spirit of equality, mutual understanding and trust, and based on respect for international law, especially the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as that for the sovereignty and jurisdiction of coastal countries over their exclusive economic zones and continental shelves, participants added.

They stressed the need for the parties concerned to end all activities that further complicate the situation, refrain from the use of force or the threat to use force, maintain the status quo, and restore trust.

Delegates also suggested the parties consider and put forth a new agenda to better suit their stance, reach the adoption of the COC in the immediate future, and strictly implement the signed agreements.-VNA

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