EU voices concern over unilateral actions in East Sea

(VOVWORLD) -The EU is committed to maritime order based on international law, maritime security and cooperation, and freedom of navigation and overflight, in the interest of all states, according to EU Ambassador to ASEAN Igor Driesmans.

He said the EU is concerned about unilateral actions in the East Sea (internationally known as the South China Sea) during the past few weeks that have caused mounting tensions and a deterioration of maritime security.

These actions have included deployment of military forces and equipment on disputed maritime features, harassment and intimidation of fishing boats and other vessels, and announcements of unilaterally imposed new administrative boundaries, according to Mr. Driesmans.

He said the EU anticipates the long-awaited conclusion of negotiations between ASEAN and China on a legally binding Code of Conduct in the East Sea.

He emphasized that it is crucial for all parties in the region to exercise self-restraint and abstain from unilateral actions, refrain from militarizing the region, and resolve disputes through peaceful means in accordance with international law, in particular the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).