Foreign experts concerned about maritime security in East Sea

Many international experts attending a recent meeting on maritime security in Vietnam have voiced their concerns over unilateral actions and militarization in the East Sea in the recent past, which they said have seriously affected peace, stability, and navigation and overflight security and safety in the region.

More than 80 delegates and experts from 27 countries and international organizations attended the 11th ASEAN Regional Forum Inter-Sessional Meeting on Maritime Security in the central city of Da Nang on Thursday and Friday. They reviewed maritime security and cooperation within the ASEAN Regional Forum and gave recommendations and initiatives for the next period.

There remain differences in the approach to maritime issues, particularly those relating to territorial disputes. But delegates agreed that all disputes must be managed and settled with respect to international law including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. They demonstrated a keen interest in the ongoing negotiations between ASEAN and China on a code of conduct (COC) in the East Sea, said Vu Ho, Head of Vietnam's Foreign Ministry's ASEAN Department.

Participants recommended involved countries establish a direct communication channel between their defense officials, improve exchanges, conduct joint patrols, and increase information sharing to facilitate the COC.

Established in 1994, the ASEAN Regional Forum aims to promote dialogue and cooperation among member countries in politics and security.

Source: VOV5