CHINA / DIPLOMACY
‘Don't overestimate your dominance,’ Chinese Embassy in Vietnam responds to Harris’ lobbying
Published: Aug 27, 2021 12:18 PM
A woman walks inside a barricaded neighborhood in Hanoi, Vietnam on Tuesday during the government-imposed lockdown to stop the spread of COVID-19. The country reported more than 10,390 infections on Tuesday, forcing its government to call in army to introduce strict lockdowns. Photo: AFP

A woman walks inside a barricaded neighborhood in Hanoi, Vietnam on Tuesday during the government-imposed lockdown to stop the spread of COVID-19. The country reported more than 10,390 infections on Tuesday, forcing its government to call in army to introduce strict lockdowns. Photo: AFP


 
“Don't overestimate your dominance… countries in the region will not follow the US baton and jump into an anti-China chariot of the US,” China’s Embassy in Vietnam said in response to offensive remarks made by US Vice President Kamala Harris, who accused China of bullying in the South China Sea during her visit to Vietnam on Wednesday.  

In the US vice president’s first visit to Vietnam, Harris offered “support” to Vietnam in the security field to combat China’s so-called assertiveness in the South China Sea, amid questions over US commitment to its allies after the Afghan debacle. 

Speaking at a meeting with Vietnam’s President Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Harris said there’s a need to “raise the pressure” on China “and to challenge its bullying and excessive maritime claims,” the Washington Post reported. 

Ignoring the historical background, facts of the South China Sea issue and the aspiration and efforts of China and ASEAN countries to jointly uphold peace and stability in the region, the US has deliberately created the "coercion theory" and distorted China's position and claims, the Chinese embassy said in a statement posted on its official website on Thursday. 

“The Chinese government's position on the South China Sea issue is consistent and clear-cut. China has no intention of raising new claims, nor will it give up its inherent and lawful rights,” said the embassy, noting China is confident working with regional countries to manage differences through dialogue on the basis of mutual respect and actively carry out cooperation so as to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea.  

Before Harris' visit, Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh said that developing Vietnam-China relations is a strategic choice and a top priority of Vietnam's foreign policy, during his meeting with Chinese Ambassador to Vietnam Xiong Bo on Tuesday.

The US government has long pledged not to take a position on sovereignty issues in the South China Sea, but it has trampled on its solemn commitment and openly instigated and coerced regional countries to challenge China, the embassy said.  

It is obvious that what the US really wants is not regional peace and stability, nor "freedom of navigation," but the freedom for US warships to run amok in the South China Sea, said the embassy, “the US is the real driver of militarization and bullying in the region.”

“At a time when the world is focusing on the US’ ‘great escape’ in Kabul, is the US awakening the memory of the ‘Saigon Moment’ 46 years ago, by sending US politicians to Vietnam to sow discord between China and its neighboring countries?” the embassy questioned.  

The US used 15.35 million tons of bombs and mines in Vietnam, sprayed chemical agents such as 80 million liters of orange defoliant, causing the largest, longest, the most serious chemical agent disaster in the history of mankind, with 4.8 million Vietnamese impacted, and at least 150,000 children suffering from congenital malformations.  

The Vietnamese people are still suffering from the trauma of war. The world will not forget the war crimes committed by the US against the people of Vietnam and other parts of the world, the embassy said. 

“We urge the US not to underestimate the strong resolve and capability of the Chinese people to safeguard national sovereignty, security and development interests. The US should not underestimate the importance of independence to countries in the region, nor should it overestimate its dominance, as countries in the region will not follow the US baton and jump into an anti-China chariot,” the embassy said. 


Global Times

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