The move will backfire and threaten stability in East Asia, Professor Vladimir Kolotov from St Petersburg University told the Vietnam News Agency (VNA)'s correspondents in Russia.

The East Sea issue, he said, should be addressed on the basis of international law.

Professor Vladimir Kolotov

In addition to taking advantage of its roles as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and ASEAN Chair 2020, he suggested Vietnam step up people-to-people diplomacy through friendship associations with other countries.

Several Russian news agencies and newspapers also posted articles regarding the protest by Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang on the establishment of the two districts within the so-called “Sansha city”.

On April 19, Hang said that Vietnam strongly protests the establishment of the so-called “Sansha city” and related acts, as they seriously violate Vietnam’s sovereignty.

“Vietnam has affirmed many times that it has sufficient historical evidence and legal foundation to assert its sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos,” Hang said.

She stressed that any moves by China are invalid and unrecognised, harm friendship among nations, and further complicate the situation in the East Sea, the region, and the world.

“Vietnam demands that China respect Vietnam’s sovereignty, abolish its wrongful decisions relating to these recent moves, and not commit any similar acts in the future,” she said.

Source: VNA