Vietnam has underlined the significant role of the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in creating legal frameworks for promoting the exploitation of seas and oceans in a peaceful, fair, stable and effective manner for humankind’s peace and prosperity.

Addressing the 25th meeting of State Parties to the UNCLOS, which took place in New York, the US from June 8-12, the head of Vietnam’s Permanent Representative Delegation to the UN, Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga noted that the East Sea, which is rich in natural resources and the second largest maritime route in the world, should be safeguarded and used in a sustainable way.

The ambassador stressed the need to maintain peace, stability, navigation security, and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea in line with the UNCLOS and international law.

Vietnam is concerned about current complicated developments in the East Sea, especially large-scale construction activities, which change the natural characteristics of some structures in the sea, destroy marine environment and ecosystem and seriously affecting peace, stability and security in the region, thus causing great concerns among ASEAN member nations and countries inside and outside the region, Ambassador Nga stated.

She emphasised that all actions that change the status quo in the East Sea, damage the marine environment and further complicate disputes in the waters must stop immediately.

The official also reiterated Vietnam’s consistent stance on the issue, which calls for the settlement of disputes in the East Sea by peaceful measures, in line with international law, including the UNCLOS, and that dispute-involved parties should fully carry out commitments in the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea and work together to build a Code of Conduct (COC) soon.

The meeting, which saw the participation of 136 UNCLOS member nations, approved reports on activities of the International Court of Justice on the Law of the Sea in 2014, the International Seabed Authority and the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf.-VNA