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Vietnam Protests China’s Planned Paracel Islands Sailboat Race

Vietnam is demanding that China halt the organization of a sailboat race to the disputed Paracel Islands, according to a statement on the government’s website posted today.

The race violates Vietnam’s sovereignty and goes against China’s commitment to not take action that would “further complicate” the situation in the South China Sea, Luong Thanh Nghi, a Foreign Ministry spokesman, said in the statement.

The island chain in the South China Sea is fully controlled by China, which ousted fellow claimant Vietnam from the 30 islets and reefs in a 1974 battle in which 71 soldiers were killed.

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