Local Vietnamese Americans protest against China over Spratly Islands

Vietnamese Americans in Seattle march down the streets of Little Saigon in the International District, protesting against China (Photo provided by Northwest Vietnamese News)

Last Sunday, June 19, members of Seattle’s Vietnamese community protested against China, demanding that China stay out of Vietnam’s territory.

In the past month, Vietnam has accused Chinese boats of preventing Vietnamese vessels from conducting oil and gas exploration in the waters of its central coast. Vietnam said Chinese boats cut cables of state-run PetroVietnam. The cables are used to conduct seismic surveys.

China responded by saying the clashes occurred because the Vietnamese boat endangered the lives of Chinese fishermen.

The conflicts occurred near the Spratly Islands, which are claimed by both Vietnam and China, as well as other Asian countries. Vietnam and China have a long history of maritime clashes in disputed parts of the South China Sea near the Spratly Islands, which are teeming with fish and believed rich in oil and gas reserves.

China says territorial disputes should be handled one-on-one, but Vietnam has said it welcomes foreign assistance to maintain regional peace and stability. ♦

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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17 Responses to “Local Vietnamese Americans protest against China over Spratly Islands”

  1. Anone says:

    If China wants to use their made up historical map drew on an ancient flower vas. well, never heard of it before until there is oil then there is ancient Chinese map. True is no body knew how to draw map until the Europeans looked for new world and drew map as they went along.

    Secondly, in ancient time, Southern China and Hainan Island belonged to the Yue ( Yuet = Viet) kingdom. The Cantonese people from South China are children of Yue ( Viets- in Spanish V is pronounced like Y) not China.

  2. China Lee says:

    “U.S. has not signed the 1982 Convention ‘Laws of the Sea’. Britain has a gigantic maritime economic zone in the South Atlantic – 200 km around each: Asuncion, St. Helena, Tristan da Cunha, Gough, South Georgia, South Shetlands, South Sandwich, South Orkneys, Falklands/Malvinas…” [Jan Z. Volens’ informative post]

    Why has no one demanded that Britain relinquish its “gigantic maritime economic zone in the South Atlantic”? It is inherently unfair to apply a double-standard to only China.

    • Joseph Yorio says:

      I’m not familiar with these islands and whether or not Britain claims 200 miles EEZ around their islands, but if that’s true two wrongs don’t make a right. Meanwhile, explain how China can claim almost all South China Sea? One example,the distance between Vietnamese shore and Spratly is 480 miles, even if China owns Spratly ( which they do not ) they may claim 12 miles (UNCLOS) or at the most 200 miles ( Chinese decree ) why does your 9-point map leaves Vietnam only about 100 miles? Another example, Spratly islands are 760 miles from Hunan, why does China own everything in between? Just admit it, China is the Middle King and her time has come. Now it’s South China sea, next Gulf of Thailand then Indian Ocean… Oh, about land it’s India, Russia…Well, enough of double standard.

  3. China Lee says:

    Vietnamese and Filipinos should stop encroaching on thousand-year-old Chinese territory in the South China Sea.

    Source: Wikipedia article on Paracel Islands with primary sources listed in footnotes

    “The coast belonged to the Kingdom of Cauchi China.”


    * There are some Chinese cultural relics in the Paracel islands dating from the Tang and Song dynasty eras[12][note 1], and there is some evidence of Chinese habitation on the islands in these periods.[13].”

    • LeNguyen says:

      1. Recent escalated tensions in the South China sea is not about the disputed Paracel and Spratly islands. It’s about China violating international laws in its violent attacks of Vietnamese and Philippine survey ships inside their Economic Exclusive Zones (EEZ). UN’s Law of the sea (UNCLOS)generally, allows law-abiding nations to claim up to 200 nm from their continental shell coast line as EEZ and 12 nm islands in the middle of the sea.
      2. China causes this conflict because it claims not just all Paracel and Spratly islands but over 85% of the South China sea which for centuries, have been shared and fed Brunei, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. In fact, if we permits China to enforce its U-shape map of the South China sea there will be no more international water in this 2nd most busy sea lane of the world and some countries have less than 20 nm for their fishery and other economic exploration. Look at the illogical map of China’s intention on that same Wikipedia website that you cited. yourself.
      3. This is 21st century of international laws and co-existence and things changed a lot in the last thousand years. China could have discovered these islands a thousand years ago, mentioned them in records and documents many times or found Chinese relics somewhere… still, does not give China the only claim for these islands especially, ownership for almost all water around them? How much more than just the South China sea that China is willing to go? First the sea, land is next? Japan, Korea, Russia, India…
      4. Trust of China’s “peaceful rise” is hollow words now. Back off and reconsider your positions in the world, among your neighbors…Your recent actions eliminate bi-lateral negotiation approach. Your best bet is to sit down with ASEA where most members are involved directly/indirectly with this dispute to come up with a mutually agreed solution to all parties. Alternative to this, is very painful and long-lasting damage to China and many others.

      • Soprano says:

        This guy China Lee is a professional communist spam from Red China. He posts the same several bogus non-sense proagandas on more than 100+ forums and blogs every day. We bloggers recognize this *******, amongst a few of them under fake alias like John Chan, Ozivan, China, Frank, David. So keep your head cool and just ignore the rubbish they posted. Remember only Red China hackers who work for their communist government have access to web blogs. Ordinary chinese people are innocent good human beings like us, and most of them are prohibited from entering the free world webbing. These bastards are worse than devils so Do not waste your time with them.

        • fw360 says:


          If you disagree with the comments, attack the content of the comments. Do not attack the commenters.

          You do not really know who they are; just like I do not know who you really are.

        • Krystal says:

          The apocalypse is near. I agree with BCL on this one. We had beettr become serious about beefing up our military and research presence and about protecting our sovereignty.It’s difficult to get people worked up about an issue like this in that very few Canadians have been north of the 55’th parallel and even fewer care about what happens in the Arctic. You can bet that the Russians and Americans care. If we don’t have a presence on our claimed territory and waters then The Law of Discovery leaves us open to predatory attacks by these powers that we’d be ill prepared to repulse. The Hans Island comedy was just a precursor of future conflicts.

      • fw360 says:


        Your comment is one of the most logical and fact-based argument from Vietnam’s side on this subject. Appreciate it.

        This view is rarely known to the supporters of Beijing’s sovereign claim, both in and outside of China.

        I believe arguments, history, references from both sides should put on the table of negotiation in front of the UN. Then we can see a rational debate to settle this dispute once for all.

      • fw360 says:

        A fact about the “9-dotted U-shape line” is very much misunderstood. When this claim was made?

        It needs to be clarified for a cooler debate.

        Some poeple on Vietnam side say it showed up out of nowhere in 2009, after the discovery of oil/gas in the region.

        China can show that it showed up before PRC was born. It showed up before ROC was born.

        One can argue maybe it has never been recognized internationally. But, one cannot say it is newly created item in the last few years.

        So it is around 100 year old. Therefore, it has nothing to do with recent oil/gas discovery or perceived expansionistic China.

        • SE-AsiaSea says:


          1.The ‘9 dotted U shaped line map’ belonged to ROC in 1947. Red China Communists represent for PRC, not ROC. China Communists have no legal right to represent for ROC (Twaiwan), thus Communism China has no legal right to use ‘9 dotted U shaped line map’

          2. The ‘U shaped line map’ just appeared in 20th century, which STOLE the territorial waters of Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia & Vietnam! The terrial waters of those countries already HAVE APPEARED on their maps for thousands years BEFORE 20th century, and those countries HAVE EXERCISED their SOVEREIGNTY over their territorial waters for thousands years.

          3. According to United Nation Convention Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982), every country surrounding S.China Sea has Extension Economic Zone 200 nautical miles from coast line. China’s U shaped line map is seriously violated UNCLOS 1982, which China already signed! China should respect International Law of the Sea.

          4. If China uses old maps, old history, old ancient artifacts to claim S.China Sea & its islands, then China SHOULD FREE Tibet, East Turkistan & Inner Mongolia RIGHT NOW, before China can claim S. China Sea & its islands. Because according to old maps, old history, old ancient artifacts, Tibet, East Turkistan & Inner Mongolia DID NOT BELONG TO CHINA!

          Peace will come in S. China Sea if China respect International Laws

          Peace will never come in S. China Sea if China uses the law of China bandit gang!

      • fw360 says:


        You seem to be knowledgeable about the Vietnam side of this debate. How do you counter the following point from China side:

        “In 1958, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) issued a declaration defining its territorial waters within what is known as the nine-dotted line which encompassed the Spratly Islands. North Vietnam’s prime minister, Phạm Văn Đồng, sent a diplomatic letter to China’s prime minister, Zhou Enlai, stating that “The Government of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam respects this decision. “The diplomatic note was written on September 14 and was publicized on Nhan Dan newspaper (Vietnam) on September 22, 1958.”

        Based on the above, the government in Hanoi today is the same government then in 1958, there should be no territorial water dispute between Vietnam and China.

        It was settled in 1958. Vietnam agreed that they belong to China.

        • SE-AsiaSea says:

          Chinese Communist fw360,

          You are brainwashed very well by Chinese Communists’ cunning propaganda!

          1. According to Geneva Accords 1954, Vietnamn was divided to 2 different countries: North Vietnam & South Vietnam. Paracel & Spratly islands belong to South Vietnam. China Prime Minister Zhou Enlai DID SIGN Geneva Accords 1954. In 1958, China declared her territorial waters included Paracel & Spratly islands, it’s the evidence that China SERIOUSLY VIOLATED Geneva Accords 1954, which China already signed!

          2. Paracel & Spratly islands legally belonged to South Vietnam from 1954 to 1975. In 1958, Pham V. Dong was a Prime Minister of North Vietnamn country, not a Prime Minister of South Vietnam country; therefore, Pham V. Dong could not give away anything that did not belong to Pham V. Dong or North Vietnam country. Can I write a document to say that I give away your computer to my friend??? Can my friend use that document to claim or take away your computer??? Of course not!

          3. In letter of Pham V. Dong, there is NO WORD mention to Spratly islands & Paracel islands,but China cunning propaganda is distorting Pham V. Dong recognized these islands belong to China!

          4. In letter of Pham V. Dong, he recognized “12 nautical miles of China territorial waters”. Can you tell me WHERE is 12 nautical miles of China territorial waters in S. China Sea??? WHERE???

          In fact, China NEVER NEVER apply 12 nautical miles of territorial waters in S. China Sea as Pham V. Dong recognized in his letter!, but greedy China claims 90% of S. China Sea! This is another evidence of China CHEATING!

          Therefore, the letter of Pham V Dong HAS NO LEGAL RIGHT for China to claim Paracel & Spratly islands. Greedy
          China just distorts the letter of Pham V Dong to excuse for China illegal actions when China used weapons & warships to steal Paracel & Spratly islands from Vietnam!

          If letter of Pham V Dong has legal right for China to claim Paracel & Spratly islands, why didn’t China go to International Court to claim these islands instead of using wars to kill Vietnamese people on these islands in order to occupy these islands???

          If China has ‘strong’ evidences to prove S. China Sea & its islands belong to China, why did Philippines ask China 2 times & Vietnam ask China 2 times to solve the conflict in S. China Sea in international courts in peaceful way, but China refused all of 4 times? WHY???

          Because China can use cheating informations to cheat stupid people but China can not cheat International Lawyers & International Courts!


  1. […] And overseas, the Vietnamese have been protesting against the Chinese government over the ownership of the Spratly Islands (a contested area) and the breach of borders. These protests were taken up by Seattle’s Vietnamese community. Read more. […]

  2. […] And overseas, the Vietnamese have been protesting against the Chinese government over the ownership of the Spratly Islands (a contested area) and the breach of borders. These protests were taken up by Seattle’s Vietnamese community. Read more. […]

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