Ship of love from mainlanders to Truong Sa soldiers

So when he returned to the mainland to continue his studies, he immediately began a project called "Vegetable gardens for islands" to improve the lives of islanders and soldiers stationed there.  Dang Ngoc Vu was stationed on Truong Sa Archipelago in 2013. During that time the islands often faced imminent combat and entire areas, including vegetable gardens, had to be leveled. In their shelter-pits, the soldiers lived on canned food, bean sprouts, and young leaves. Vu and his comrades longed for chilies, eggplants, and vegetables to enliven their diets. Vu says he nurtured a plan to one day build a modern vegetable garden for his mates, adding: “There was a serious shortage of vegetables that caused many of my comrades to be hospitalized. I became determined to do something for the islands, to at least make a vegetable garden for the soldiers.” In February, 2015, Vu returned to the mainland to study at the Ho Chi Minh City Industry and Trade College. He and members of the school's Science and Technology Club began to research and design models for high-tech "Vegetable gardens for islands". A pilot project on Tho Chu Island in Kien Giang Province, said Vu, takes advantage of local natural light and modern hydroponic technology to maximize vegetable yields while conserving energy, water, and human effort. The system will save the army and islanders thousands of US dollars annually in vegetable costs. An advocate of safe agriculture,…... [read more]

However, the coordination remains inadequate, according to a political report presented at the 11th National Party Congress. Therefore, the Communist Party of Vietnam worked out important directions to ensure both marine-based economic growth and national defence and security until 2020. In the document of its 11th National Congress, the Party focused on developing the marine economy to fully tap Vietnam’s potential. Vietnam has a coastline of 3,260 km and sovereignty and jurisdiction over a total area of about 1 million square kilometres of the sea includinginternal waters, territorial waters, the contiguous zone, exclusive economic zones and its continental shelf. It has 3,000 islands of various sizes, 12 archipelagoes, as well as the Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelagos. All the sea and islands are in 125 coastal districts in 28 provinces, including 12 island districts. Of the 1,656 km2 of Vietnam’s islands and archipelagos, 66 islands are inhabited with a total population of more than 155,000 people. All the islands and archipelagoes are an inseparable part of the country that plays a very important role in national defence and construction. Developing the marine-based economy The Party and State have attached great importance to the sea and islands and are determined to turn Vietnam into a strong marine-based country, considering it a strategic target for national defence and construction. In the 1990-1992 period, Vietnam launched an East Sea – Islands programme, followed by the Party Politburo’s policies on sea-based economic development and the struggle to protect the country’s sovereignty…... [read more]

Old map proves China’s claims are worthless All maps drawn by Chinese people before 1909 indicate that the southernmost point of China is Hainan Island. Meanwhile, Vietnamese made maps and European navigation charts since the 17th century have depicted that the Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) Archipelagos belong to Vietnam. According to historian Duong Trung Quoc, China’s oldest map in contemporary times, “Hoang trieu truc tinh dia du toan do” (an administrative map of provincial boundaries) published in 1904, reflects China’s perception of its territory during the Qing Dynasty. This shows that by the early 20th century, the Chinese feudal administration had not yet intended to claim sovereignty over the two archipelagos of Vietnam. “This is important significant evidence and supplements the historical evidence proving Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa Archipelagos,” Quoc said. In fact, China only started claiming Hoang Sa from 1909 and Truong Sa from 1935 while Vietnam held much earlier evidence of its sovereignty in the East Sea, at least from the 17th century. According to East Sea researcher Nguyen Hong Thao, the evidence Vietnam has collected is overwhelming. They are recorded in royal historical works compiled by the Office of National History and printed during the Nguyen Dynasty. They include “Dai Nam thuc luc chinh bien” (The Main Part of The Chronicles of Dai Nam, 1848), “Kham Dinh Dai Nam hoi dien su le” (The Dai Nam Administrative Records, 1843-1851), “Dai Nam nhat thong chi” (The Geography of the Unified…... [read more]

The statement was made by spokesman Luong Thanh Nghi at the Foreign Ministry’s regular press briefing in Hanoi on October 11. In reply to media questions about Vietnam’s response to China’s recent acts, Nghi said China has violated Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos. Following a series of illegal activities of building and developing the so-called “Sansha city”, China held a flag raising ceremony on October 1 to mark its National Day on Phu Lam island in the Hoang Sa archipelago. On October 3, the Chinese navy’s Nanhai Fleet held an exercise in the waters of the Hoang Sa archipelago and five days later, China set up a meteorological station of the so-called Sansha city. Earlier, on September 23, the Chinese press reported that China will deploy unmanned aircraft to intensify the surveillance of the waters, including the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos. The Chinese side’s above mentioned acts seriously violated Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos, international law and the agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of sea-related issues between Vietnam and China signed in October 2011, Nghi noted. They also ran counter to the spirit of the Declaration on Conduct of the Parties in the East Sea (DOC) signed between ASEAN and China in 2002, thus further complicating the East Sea situation. These acts are totally null and void, he affirmed. At the press briefing on the same day, in response to a question on a…... [read more]

Nghi was answering questions about Vietnam’s response to a number of recent activities by China in the East Sea, especially its official announcement and enforcement of coastal border security regulations for Hainan, the exercise on Quang Hoa island of the Hoang Sa archipelago, the provision of 3D and CDMA services on Chu Thap (Stone Cross) of the Truong Sa archipelago, and the approval of the Sanya City cruise tourism development plan (2012-2022), which included tours to islands in the Hoang Sa archipelago. Those activities further complicated the situation in the East Sea and ran counter to the spirit of the Declaration on Conduct of the Parties in the East Sea (DOC), Nghi said, describing them as unhelpful to peace and stability in the region, as well as Vietnam-China relations. Vietnam resolutely opposed those wrongful activities and demanded China to immediately cancel them, the official said.... [read more]

This Convention now became the primary instrument governing the conduct of States in their uses of the ocean. The adoption of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea met the desire and expectations of the international community for a fair international legal framework related all issues on the sea and ocean, including seabed and the subsoil of the submarine areas. The process of negotiation of the UNCLOS took years to be completed with efforts of over 150 states and international organizations, including NGOs. To date, 164 States are party to the UNCLOS. The UNCLOS is a constitutive multilateral treaty, setting out the rights and obligations of States and other international actors in different maritime areas and in relation to various uses of the ocean. Therefore, the Convention is accepted by such a large number of states, including land-locked ones. The UNCLOS laid the foundation for the establishment of a new legal order for issues related to the sea and ocean. It comprehensively covers all sea-related areas, taking into account the interests of all states in the world, be they developed or developing, large or small, coastal or land-locked. Since its entry into force on November 16, 1994, the UNCLOS has become an important legal basis for regulating maritime issues as well as an important legal instrument for settling and dealing with sea-related disputes. That is why the UNCLOS is considered as “A Constitution for the Oceans”. Throughout its 30 years of existence, the UNCLOS has been…... [read more]

Reports presented by scientists on the East Sea acknowledged that new evidence from the East Sea research program affirms Vietnam’s sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa. Hanoi National University Associate Professor Dr Pham Xanh said under King Minh Mang’s dynasty in the 19th Century, Vietnamese people were sent to the archipelagoes to establish villages and citadels to protect the islands. Minh Mang also drove away fishing boats from neighbours invading his nation’s territorial waters and gave assistance to drifting ships and boats in the vicinity. Dr. Tran Duc Anh Son from the Danang Socio-Economic Development Research Institute introduced documents and archived Western maps relating to Vietnam’s sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes. Going as far back as 1526, the map records indicate that China’s territory did not include Hoang Sa or Truong Sa. There were also forums at the seminar on the strategic position, economic and cultural potentials, and prospects for cooperation and development between nations in the East Sea.... [read more]

The documents, donated by Chairman of the US-based Institute for Vietnamese Culture and Education Tran Thang, include 43 ancient maps and a book entitled “the Postal Atlas of China” published by China in Nanjing in 1919. Earlier on November 23, 2012, the DISD and the People’s Committee of Hoang Sa district in central Da Nang city received from Thang the 1908 Atlas and 1933 Atlas, 92 maps and three summary records with many Chinese maps attached excluding Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes. To date, Thang has presented to DISD a total of 150 maps, including 110 original and 40 copies, which were published in the UK, Germany, Australia, Canada, the US and Hong Kong (China) in the 1626-1980 period. Among them, 80 maps identify that the southernmost territory of China is Hainan island; 50 maps show that Hoang Sa and Truong Sa belong to Vietnam’s territory; and ten maritime maps and ten maps featuring Asia and Southeast Asia indicate that Hoang Sa and Truong Sa lie in the territorial sea of Vietnam.... [read more]

The event attracted thousands of domestic and foreign visitors, among them about 300 were from China, more than 100 from Japan and 500 from West European countries. They expressed their support for truth and justice that they learned through the documents at the event. Dang Cong Ngu, Chairman of the Hoang Sa district People’s Committee, said visitors’ opinions written in the museum’s comment book revealed that they supported the organisation of the exhibition for the first time. Many condemned China’s illegal occupation of the Hoang Sa Archipelago. The exhibition, the largest of its kind to date, included 125 collections of maps, three atlases and 102 books published in Western countries during the 18th and 19th centuries. The documents, originally in English, German, French, Spanish, Italian and Dutch, and translated into Vietnamese, affirm Vietnam’s sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes. Scientific studies such as “Vietnam’s Hoang Sa archipelago through archived documents of the Government of the Republic of Vietnam (1954-1975)” and “Documentary fonts on Vietnam's sovereignty over Hoang Sa island district – Danang city” were also available to visitors. Visitors could also see the maps “Hoang trieu truc tinh dia du toan do” (a Chinese administrative map of provincial boundaries published under the Qing dynasty), “An Nam dai quoc hoa do” (the Map of the Great Country of An Nam) and “Dai Nam thong nhat toan do” (The Complete Map of Unified Dai Nam), as well as maps of Indochinese weather stations. The exhibition showcased three atlases and 30…... [read more]

Entitled “Evidence of Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes”, the book comprises the results of 40-year research by famous historian Han Nguyen Nguyen Nha. The 284-page volume is based on diverse materials collected both at home and abroad, including some high legal and historical documents such as records of the Nguyen dynasty (1804-1839), documents on exercising sovereignty of the Tay Son dynasty (1778-1802), bibliographies and old maps of the Vietnamese Feudal State, and western old documents and maps. The book also includes four appendices introducing the chronological table, maps and photographs on Hoang Sa and Truong Sa, and the Law on the Sea of Vietnam approved in June 2012.... [read more]

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