Chinese Ships Invade Vietnam’s Exclusive Economic Zone
On May 25, Vietnam demanded that a Chinese survey vessel and its five escort ships leave its exclusive economic zone (eez) in the South China Sea. The next day, the Chinese vessels were still there.
China’s Xiang Yang Hong 10 research vessel entered Vietnam’s eez on May 7. The survey ship has since been seen operating within and around gas fields licensed to Vietgazprome, a joint-venture between Russian oil company Gazprom and PetroVietnam.
International law does not prohibit ships passing through the exclusive economic zones of other countries. However, Vietnam accused China of violating its national sovereignty after the Chinese Ministry of Transport announced on May 22 that it had installed three light buoys within Vietnam’s territorial waters. Light buoys are often used to mark safe channels, important reference points, approaches to harbors, isolated dangers, and areas of special significance.
Intimidation: China regularly bullies its Southeast Asian neighbors in the South China Sea. It often deploys ships to threaten foreign powers away from offshore resources and out of the region’s shipping lanes. China is attempting to assert complete dominance over these waters.
China is intimidating the nations of Southeast Asia into submission to its will. It is forcing these countries to do what it wants. Everything is headed in the direction of war.
—Gerald Flurry, Trumpet editor in chief, “China Is Steering the World Toward War”