An anti-China demonstration took place in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, on the 19th.
On the 19th of this month ushered in the 40th anniversary of the Sino-Vietnamese Sea Battle in the Paracels. The Associated Press and the British BBC reported that both the Vietnamese media and civilians showed a “high profile” that was rarely seen in the past in this year’s commemorative activities. Ten people held demonstrations in the capital Hanoi to commemorate the Paracel Sea Battle and the Sino-Vietnamese Border War, while also protesting against China. Some experts believe that these commemorations show that Vietnam has always remembered Xisha, but it has also been careful to keep sovereignty disputes under control.
Around 19:8 am on the 30th, about 30 Vietnamese people gathered in the Lee Taejo Park next to Hoan Kiem Lake in the center of Hanoi to display banners and shout slogans. The demonstrators were mainly elderly women in their 1974s and XNUMXs. Most of them were relatives of Vietnamese soldiers who died in the XNUMX Sino-Vietnamese Battle of the Paracels. The crowd held photos of the dead or disabled relatives or the "Glorious Family" certificate issued by the Vietnamese government that year, and chanted slogans such as "Huangsha (China Xisha) and Changsha (China Nansha) belong to Vietnam". The banners put up by the people at the rally stated, "You cannot sell Huangsha and Changsha."
More than 20 plainclothes policemen and security guards surrounded the crowd and used loudspeakers to talk to them from time to time. Ten minutes later, plainclothes and security began to chase the demonstrators, and both sides pushed. At about 9:30, the security personnel no longer forcefully drove the demonstrators, the demonstrators left by themselves, and the demonstration rally ended immediately. According to the "Global Times" reporter, the demonstration was based on the commemoration of the Xisha naval battle, but the focus was on accusing the authorities of corruption and local unfair deeds caused harm to the lower classes.
The British BBC report stated that the background of this protest seems to be the first time that Vietnam began a "high-profile" commemoration of the Xisha Battle 40 years ago. The local "Youth Daily" and "Young People" newspapers published commemorative articles related to them. Vietnam's "Daily Express" website issued an article on the 17th detailing the Sino-Vietnamese battle in the Paracels 40 years ago. The article stated that at that time, China dispatched surface warships, aircraft and other weapons to clashed with South Vietnam in the South China Sea. The article vividly introduced the power mobilization and power comparison between the Chinese Navy and South Vietnam in this war in the form of accompanying pictures.
The Associated Press stated on the 17th that Hanoi is commemorating the China-Vietnam (South Vietnam) naval battle. It is worth noting that the state-owned Vietnamese media not only published articles about the naval battle, but also interviewed the relatives of the victims. From past experience, the Vietnamese media will not report on this unless approved by the government. According to a BBC article, at a meeting at the end of December last year, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung told Vietnamese historians that the government planned to commemorate the 12 Sino-Vietnamese Paracel War and the 1974 Sino-Vietnamese Border War. He also urged that "these historical facts" be written into school textbooks.
Zhuang Guotu, dean of the Nanyang Research Institute of Xiamen University, told the Global Times on the 19th that the Vietnamese side used this commemorative event as a response to China’s new Hainan fishery regulations. Attitude, on the other hand, is an explanation to the Vietnamese nationals. This modest approach shows that Vietnam hopes to keep the dispute with China in the South China Sea sovereignty under control and not to intensify the dispute, so China does not need to overreact.
Sun Xiaoying, a researcher at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies of the Guangxi Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times reporter on the 19th that these commemorative events show that Vietnam has always remembered Xisha, but now China has a clear advantage in the comparison of strength with Vietnam, making the Vietnamese official choose This kind of folk "cover-up" method.
Compared with Vietnam, the Philippines and the United States are more high-profile. On the 18th, the spokesperson of the Philippine Ministry of Foreign Affairs Hernández accused China of China’s “South China Sea Fisheries Measures”, saying that “China intends to dominate the South China Sea” and once again declared that China should join the United Nations arbitration process to resolve territorial disputes. In addition, the informal meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers ended in Myanmar on the 18th. The meeting expressed concern about the current disputes surrounding the South China Sea issue.
At the same time, the US Department of Defense announced on the 17th that it will convene a meeting of defense ministers of the United States and ASEAN in April this year. This is the first time that the United States has convened a meeting of defense ministers from all 4 ASEAN member states. Outsiders speculate that the main topics of the meeting will involve the South China Sea issue and freedom of navigation. Some analysts believe that the strategic intention of the United States is very obvious, that is, to further strengthen the military relations between the United States and ASEAN countries and pave the way for the United States' Asia-Pacific rebalancing strategy.
Although the South China Sea dispute has not yet been resolved, ordinary people prefer peace in the region. A Vietnamese friend of the Global Times reporter, Ah Ching, said that after the economic reform, he also had business dealings with China. Although the textbooks and the public opinion around him emphasized that "Huangsha and Changsha Islands belong to Vietnam", "but I and China The business partners’ cooperation is very pleasant. I think that blindly inciting the two countries’ opposition is not good for Vietnam! The people of the two countries want to live a good life.”