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East Sea situation discussed at Ocean dialogue in Hanoi

Update: 12-06-2018 | 10:36:02

The Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) foundation of Germany, and the Australian Embassy in Vietnam on June 11 co-hosted an ocean dialogue discussing legal issues and ways to manage regional disputes related to the East Sea.

The event saw the attendance of Vice Chairman of the United Nations International Law Commission Nguyen Hong Thao, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Herman J. Kraft from the University of the Philippines, and Dr Yan Yan from China’s National Institute for South China Sea Studies.

In his remarks, Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam (DAV) Deputy Director Le Hai Binh underscored the role of international law in maintaining international security and order, describing it as the foundation for ensuring security and stability in the region and the world.

China and the ASEAN countries are negotiating a Code of Conduct (COC) of parties in the East Sea. All concerned parties declared that they comply with international law, but the differences in law interpretation have posed a huge challenge to regional cooperation, Binh noted.

Counsellor at the Australian Embassy Stacey Nation said the embassy co-organized the third ocean dialogue to affirm her country’s commitment in its Foreign Policy White Paper to promoting a secure, open and prosperous Indo-Pacific region in which the rights of all states are respected and disputes are settled peacefully in accordance with international law.

Peter Girke, a representative of the KAS foundation, said the East Sea needs common and peaceful solutions in line with international law to settle territorial disputes.

The dialogue also centred on legal issues related to the East Sea, including the principle of respecting law, the legal status of entities, and The Hague tribunal’s ruling in the Philippines’ lawsuit. In addition, legal aspects pertaining to cooperation for common development in the region, the COC, and measures to promote common viewpoints on international law in the East Sea were also tabled for discussion.

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