East Sea issues should be included in French universities’ syllabuses

(VOVworld) – Collisions in the East Sea are current affairs of great concern to Europe and France, which should be discussed as an important political science topic at French universities. Professors Laurent Gedeon and Francois Guillemot made the remarks at a seminar entitled “Challenges arising from China-Vietnam tensions” recently held by the Institute of East Asia of France’s Lyon Pedagogical College. The seminar discussed different aspects of current developments in Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone. Francois Guillemot, a leading researcher on Vietnam in the Rhone region, said the seminar discussions were objectively carried out, and most of the delegates have taken Vietnam’s side in this matter. He said: "China has obviously undertaken provocative and aggressive activities in its hegemonic strategy towards its neighboring country’s territory. Discussions and explanations of China’s policies are necessary to force them to halt their actions and respect international law. Amid a crisis with many diplomatic aspects, Vietnam should stay strong to overcome these challenges and continue its fight through legal actions, although it’s not an issue to the International Court of Arbitration of Maritime Laws. It’s important for Vietnam to cooperate with other countries like the Philippines and Indonesia to successfully oppose China’s ambition."

East Sea issues should be included in French universities’ syllabuses - ảnh 1
Participants at the seminar at Lyon College. Photo: BBC

Participants discussed possible steps Vietnam might take to solve the problem. Professor Gedeon said: "I think Vietnam should do 3 things at the same time. The first is to seek a diplomatic solution through peaceful means. The second is to take legal action by suing China in the La Hague International Court or the International Court of Maritime Law, or at least the International Court of Arbitration. It’s possible for Vietnam to raise the issue at the UN General Assembly, of course, with strong support from other UN member countries. The third is to call for international support, especially from ASEAN countries, for the fight of Vietnam. This is because it’s struggle. China can easily block a lawsuit and Vietnam will then need support from other countries."

French experts agreed on the importance of unity and solidarity among ASEAN countries against China in the East Sea disputes to create pressure on China.