Hanoi (VNA) – The Party and State attach importance to the maintenance and development of stable friendship and cooperation with neighbouring countries, making this a top priority in Vietnam’s foreign policy, said Deputy Foreign Minister Le Hoai Trung.
In his article titled “Firmly defending border and territorial sovereignty” on the occasion of the 30th ongoing Diplomatic Conference in Hanoi, Trung emphasised the importance of safeguarding the national border and territorial sovereignty and building peaceful borders with neighbours China, Laos and Cambodia.
Vietnam has a 5,000-km-long land border shared with China in the north, Laos in the west and Cambodia in the southwest, which passes through 25 border localities of Vietnam and 21 in the neighbouring countries.
The country also has 28 provinces and cities along a coastline of about 3,260 kilometres, more than 3,000 islands and islets and the two archipelagoes of Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly).
In recent years, Vietnam has basically completed land border demarcation and marker planting with its neighbouring nations, and cooperated with relevant sides to manage the border, thus ensuring security, order and social safety in border areas.
The management of the Vietnam-China land border has been a bright spot in the relationship between the two countries. The boundary line and marker system have been firmly protected.
Vietnam and Laos have completed increasing and upgrading border markers along their national boundary and signed and implemented two new legal documents on border management.
Meanwhile, the Vietnam-Cambodia land border demarcation and marker planting has seen positive changes. The two countries’ leaders agreed that the two sides will sign two legal documents to record the completion of 84 percent of the work.
These results have given Vietnam and its neighbouring nations a border with high international legal value, which is important for border management.
From 2016 up to now, the situation in the East Sea has not seen serious incidents, but there are some new developments, which pose unpredictable risks and challenges, the article said.
In this context, Vietnam has resolutely and persistently worked in all fronts to protect the country’s sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos, maintaining national sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over its waters and continental shelf and islands in line with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea 1982 (UNCLOS 1982).
Vietnam has maintained and promoted negotiation mechanisms on maritime issues with related countries, including China, Indonesia and Malaysia.
The country has also worked with ASEAN and China to promote the full and effective implementation of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and approved a draft framework of the Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC). The sides are working on the content of the COC.
Regarding future plans, Deputy FM Trung said the border and territory situation will continue to see complicated developments and challenges.
He underlined the need to continue to manage and protect the boundaries and land markers, while enhancing cooperation with neighbouring countries in building peaceful and stable borderlines, thus facilitating development in border areas.
At sea, Vietnam will continue to affirm its consistent policy in resolutely defending the national sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction as defined by international law, including UNCLOS 1982; promote the country’s role and position at regional and international forums and work with relevant parties to resolve disputes peacefully, the article said.-VNA
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