Vietnam strongly opposed and firmly rejected China’s unilateral decision to ban fishing in the South China Sea where the prohibition of fishing covers the Exclusive Economic Zone of neighboring countries. The ban started on May 1 and will be ended on August 16, 2019.
No fishing activities are allowed in parts of the sea under China’s jurisdiction except angling during the period, according to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of south China’s Hainan Province.
According to Vietnamese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lê Thị Thu Hằng, the actions infringed International Law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982 UNCLOS), and against the spirit and contents of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China.Vietnam News
In previous years, the Philippines also impose a fishing ban in portions of the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea), but the Country denied and refuted speculations it is due to the moves of the Chinese government.
This week, the United States Navy guided-missile destroyers Preble and Chung Hoon to conduct freedom of navigation operation within 12 nautical miles of Gaven and Johnson Reefs in the Spratly Islands, where it challenge China’s expansive claim.
According to China News Agency, it has enforced an annual fishing ban to protect the ocean’s ecosystem and biodiversity from excessive fishing since 1995. The fishing ban in the South China Sea began in 1999.