Chairman of the National Assembly’s External Relations Committee, Tran Van Hang, on June 6 sent a letter to his counterparts in the parliaments of various countries to brief them on China’s violation of Vietnam’s sovereignty in the East Sea.

In the letter, Hang thanked the parliaments as well as international organisations for raising their voice supporting Vietnam in the settlement of the issue.

He noted that since the beginning of May, China dispatched its rig Haiyang Shiyou-981 and a large number of coast guard vessels, warships and military aircraft and positioned the rig well within Vietnam ’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf in the East Sea .

“Peace, stability, security, maritime and aviation safety and freedom in the East Sea are being seriously threatened,” read the letter.

The National Assembly of Vietnam, as well as Vietnamese people, strongly condemns China’s violations of the country’s territorial sovereignty, sovereign right and jurisdiction, the letter stated.

China’s acts have gravely infringed international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea that China signed with ASEAN member countries. The acts have violated the Vietnam - China Agreement on the basic principles guiding the settlement of maritime issues, and fatally harmed the friendship and neighbourliness between the peoples of Vietnam and China, said the letter.

Vietnam has practiced the utmost restraint and persistently used peaceful measures in conformity with international law to resolutely demand China remove the rig out of Vietnam’s waters, restoring peace and stability in the East Sea, the letter continued.

It also noted that international organisations, individuals and leaders of many countries have raised their voice supporting Vietnam and opposing the illegal actions of China.

So far, the East Sea situation remains tense, with China insisting on conducting its greedy plot of claiming sovereignty over Vietnam ’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf and realising its groundless “nine-dash-line” claim, the letter noted.

More dangerously, China aggressively threatened, rammed, damaged and even sunk Vietnamese ships and injured Vietnam ’s law enforcement officials and fishermen, it said.

In the letter, Hang also called on leaders and members of the parliaments to accompany Vietnam ’s National Assembly and people to seek a necessary solution to the issue, protecting justice and preserving humankind’s common aspirations of peace.

He said that any solution must adhere to international law and the principle of respecting national sovereignty of each nation; maintaining peace, stability as well as maritime safety by demanding China remove its rig and forces out of Vietnam ’s waters immediately.

The same day, Hang also sent a letter to the President and Secretary General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, as well as leaders of regional and global inter-parliamentary organisations to inform them of China ’s violating acts and thank them for their support.

At the beginning of May 2014, China illegally dispatched the rig as well as a large fleet of armed vessels, military ships and aircraft to Vietnam’s waters and positioned the rig at 15 degrees 29 minutes 58 seconds north latitude and 111 degrees 12 minutes 06 seconds east longitude. The location is 80 miles deep inside Vietnam's continental shelf and exclusive economic zone.

On May 27, China moved the rig to 15 degrees 33 minutes 22 seconds north latitude and 111 degrees 34 minutes 36 seconds east longitude, 25 nautical miles from Tri Ton Island in Vietnam’s Hoang Sa archipelago and 23 nautical miles east-northeast from the old location.

On June 3, the oil rig moved yet again to another new position, at 15 degrees 33 minutes 36 seconds north latitude and 111 degrees 34 minutes 11 seconds east longitude. The rig’s new position, as with the other two, is still completely within Vietnam’s continental shelf.-VNA