VIETNAMESE ORGANIZATIONS ALL OVER THE WORLD
RE. THE CHINESE HAIYANG 981 RIG
IN VIETNAM'S WATERS
On May 3, 2014, the Chinese government announced the introduction of a giant exploratory rig, Haiyang 981, into Vietnam's waters (15o29' N/110o12' E, corresponding to Lot 143 of Vietnam's EEZ) with the intention of searching for oil and gas in the continental shelf of Vietnam, well within the 200-mile exclusive economic zone of Vietnam, as defined by UNCLOS (UN Convention on the Law of the Sea). It further warned all foreign vessels not to come within three nautical miles of the rig. Peking also sent an armada of some 80 ships, seven of which are destroyers, down to the area to prevent Vietnam from exercising its sovereignty in the area.
All of the above was done unilaterally in an attempt to impose its nine-dash claim of sovereignty over more than 80 percent of the Southeast Asian Sea, a claim never acknowledged by UNCLOS and considered totally illegal by the rest of the world.
This being "provocative and unhelpful to the maintenance of peace and stability in the region" (Jen Psaki at the State Department, May 7, 2014), public opinion both inside Vietnam and in the world is outraged at this latest hegemonistic "sea" grab by China.
WE, THE FOLLOWING VIETNAMESE ORGANIZATIONS
IN THE WORLD,
One, that we condemn in the most vigorous terms this most recent and blatant act of aggression by the People's Republic of China, another step in China's dangerous game of toying with war in a fast developing region which has known peace for more than a quarter century.
Two, that we join the vast majority of the 90 million Vietnamese inside Vietnam in demanding an immediate withdrawal of the giant Haiyang 981 rig from the waters of Vietnam; at the same time, we condemn Hanoi for its spineless policy regarding the Southeast Asian Sea, which allowed for China's predatory moves.
Three, that we demand an immediate stop to the repression and arrest of democracy activists and the immediate release of all prisoners of conscience currently in jail because of their opposition to the expansionist policies of Beijing.
Four, that we urge that a suit be brought against China in international courts (including the International Court of the Hague and the Hamburg International Court on the Law of the Sea) for its acts of aggression against Vietnam regarding Vietnamese property in the Southeast Asian Sea.
Five, that we appeal to the solidarity of ASEAN in the upcoming talks with China on transforming the DOC (Declaration of Conduct) into a COC (Code of Conduct) in the Southeast Asian Sea in view of securing peace and stability in the region.
Six, that we appeal to world public opinion in condemning in no uncertain terms the hegemonistic ambitions of China as it tries to make the Southeast Asian Sea with its immense resources into an "internal sea" of China. At the same time, we thank all countries, and in particular the United States of America, for speaking up on behalf not only of Vietnam but also of international peace and security, including threats to the freedom of navigation in the Southeast Asian Sea.
Only such a concerted effort could possibly stay the hands of China and its over-ambitious land and sea grabs in the defense of world peace.
Done on this 10th day of May Two Thousand and Fourteen
SIGNING ON TO THIS DECLARATION:
1. Alliance for Democracy in Vietnam (Mr. Nguyen Quoc Nam, Vice Chairman)
2. Center for Human Rights in Vietnam (Attorney Tran Thanh Hiep, Director)
3. Committee to Protect Vietnamese Workers (Mr. Nguyen Van Tanh, Chairman)
4. Dai Viet Revolutionary Party (Mr. Dan Tran, Chairman)
5. Federation of Free Viet Labor (Mr. Tran Ngoc Thanh, Chairman)
6. The Federation of Technical Strategic Directorate Associations (Mr. Doan Huu Dinh, President)
7. For the Vietnamese People Party (Mr. Nguyen Cong Bang, Chairman)
8. International Institute for Vietnam (Professor Doan Viet Hoat, Director)
9. NCVA (National Congress of Vietnamese Americans) (Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Bich, Chairman)
10. The Organization of Self-Empowered Vietnamese Citizens (Ms. Bui Anh Thu, Spokesperson)
11. Overseas Vietnamese Laity Movement (Mr. Do Nhu Dien, Coordinator)
12. The People's Democratic Party of Vietnam (Mr. Do Thanh Cong, Spokesperson)
13. The People's Force to Save Vietnam (Mr. Tran Quoc Bao, Chairman of the Board)
14. The Rally for Democracy (Dr. Nguyen Quoc Quan, M.D., Representative)
15. The United Workers and Farmers Organization of Vietnam (Ms. Nguyen Mai, Viet Nam, and Mr, Truong Quoc Viet, Australia - Co-spokespersons)
16. Viet Tan Revolutionary Party (Mr. Do Hoang Diem, Chairman)
17. Vietnam Human Rights Network (Dr. Nguyen Ba Tung, Chairman)
18. Vietnam Nationalist Party, Central Coordinating Council of Overseas Chapters (Mr. Tran Tu Thanh, Chairman)
19. Vietnamese Community of Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia (Mr. Doan Huu Dinh, Chairman)
20. Vietnamese Women for Human Rights (Ms. Lanney Tran, Chairperson)