Wed, Jul 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

No cooperation with PRC on Spratlys: official

Staff Writer, with CNA

The Ministry of National Defense yesterday ruled out cooperating with China amid rising tensions over the disputed Spratly Islands (南沙群島).

“We have never been wavered in our determination to defend our sovereignty over the Spratly Islands,” Vice Minister of Defense Andrew Yang (楊念祖) told participants at a ministry-sponsored workshop on the Spratlys.

The workshop included a trip on a warship for teachers and students from the National Taiwan Ocean University to the Taiwanese-controlled Taiping Island (太平島), the largest island in the Spratlys. The chain of islands is claimed either entirely or in part by Taiwan, China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei.

The dispute came under the spotlight after Vietnam staged a military drill in the area early last month, triggering a series of moves by some of the other claimants to cement their respective claims.

Yang said the trip to the island was part of government efforts to assert its sovereignty, adding that it would “consider other activities that will fully demonstrate our determination” to defend its stake.

“We will not yield to others with regard to the territory issue, and neither will we cooperate with China to reach a compromise of any kind on the Spratlys,” he said.

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