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Spratlys > News > English News > April 2003

Category: @News

Vietnam celebrates claim to Spratley islands

10/04/2003 22:56:31 | ABC Radio Australia News

Vietnam has celebrated what it calls the 28th anniversary of the liberation of the disputed Spratly archipelago in the South China Sea.

A large meeting to celebrate the event was held on 'Grand Spratly Island' and attended by several Vietnamese communist party and military leaders.

The deputy chairman of the National Assembly, Nguyen Phuc Thanh, praised how "the garrison and people on the Spratly off-shore district have heightened vigilance and protected the sacred territorial sovereignty of the country".

On April 29, 1975, a day before the Vietnam War ended in victory for Hanoi, the north Vietnamese army seized a large part of the Spratlys from the pro-American Saigon regime.

In 2001, China reacted angrily when Vietnam set up a local government in the Spratlys similar to other administrative districts in the country.

Both countries have produced historical and archeological evidence to support their claims in the disputed waters.

Taiwan, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines also lay claim to the Spratlys.



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