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Vietnam fisheries reject Chinese fishing ban in disputed waters

DPA
Hanoi
A Vietnamese professional fishing association on Monday rejected a recent Chinese fishing ban imposed on disputed waters in the South China Sea.
“The Vietnam Fisheries Society (VFS) strongly opposes China’s action, which has no legal grounding in waters where Vietnam holds sovereignty,” the association said in statement on its website.
“Vietnamese fishermen have complete rights to fish in waters under their sovereignty,” it added.
China last week announced a ban on fishing in the South China Sea between May 1 and August 16, citing conservation concerns, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.
“This regulation has impeded on the sovereignty of Vietnam in the Paracel Islands, Vietnam’s sovereign waters ... and violates international law including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea([UNCLOS),” VFS said in the statement.
The statement asked the Vietnamese government to take a tough stance against China’s unilateral actions in the region and encouraged fishermen to ignore the ban.
Beijing claims almost all of the South China Sea as its territory, including waters and islands claimed by Vietnam and other nations.
The Paracel Islands are claimed by Vietnam but were occupied by China in the aftermath of a 1974 invasion that killed dozens of Vietnamese.

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