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  • Viviane Nguyen

Vietnam in Favor of China's Loss in the South China Sea Battle

As Vietnam's pressure to stand up against China’s aggression continues to grow, the ruling in favor of the Philippines rather than China in an international tribunal was also a sweet victory for Vietnam.

On July 12th, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague concluded that China has no legal basis to claim historic rights to the bulk of the South China Sea, an area of contention with the Philippines as it is for Vietnam.

Within the South China Sea, large areas are disputed among various countries. Specifically, Vietnam and China both claim the Paracel and Spratly islands (also called Hoang Sa and Truong Sa in Vietnam). Vietnam’s foreign affairs ministry supported The Hague’s ruling, deeming that diplomatic and legal processes rather than force is the resolution to such contentions.

Vietnam and China have attempted to make peace despite territorial conflicts in the past that erupted in protests in Vietnam against China’s aggression, including the infamous capturing of fishermen. The ruling on Tuesday legally chipped away at China’s growing presence in the region to the undeniable satisfaction of Vietnam who resents the years of aggression.

The question remains on how sustainable reconciliation efforts between China and Vietnam can continue when maritime territorial rife erupts again in the future.

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Viviane Nguyen She is a lover of politics. She has researched and worked in different levels of government in San Jose, Sacramento, Washington D.C., and Thailand. She is motivated to highlight issues impacting the Vietnamese-American community and Asian American communities at large. She was formerly a Cal-in-Sacramento Fellow at UC Berkeley and notably a Public Policy and International Affairs Fellow at the Goldman School of Public Policy. She wants to write to show why politics, especially in 2016, is important.

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