Thursday, January 4, 2007

China rejects Vietnam`s claim over disputed islands

Beijing, Jan 04: China on Thursday dismissed Vietnam's protest and claimed "indisputable sovereignty" over the disputed islands in the oil-rich South China Sea area where Beijing has erected boundary markers.

The erection of structures marking the base points of China's territorial sea on the Xisha islands is an issue within China's sovereignty, and other countries have no right to intervene, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said.

"China has indisputable sovereignty over the Xisha, Nansha islands and adjacent islands. And we have all historical and legal evidences needed to prove this," he said in response to a question on Vietnam's protest.

Liu made the remarks when commenting on an question that Vietnam had accused China of infringing on its sovereignty by erecting these structures.

He said that according to the United Nations convention on the law of the sea and the law of the People's Republic of China on the territorial sea and the contiguous zone, Chinese government issued the base points on the Xisha islands in 1996.

Territorial disputes on the resource-rich South China Sea have emerged among China, Vietnam, The Philippines, Brunei and Malaysia since the 1970s, where each country claimed part of the ownership.

Bureau Report

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