|Vietnamese soldiers at DK1/12 Platform
Any country which has ratified the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) must comply with it, said Beni Sukadis, Programme Coordinator of the Indonesian Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies (LESPERSSI).
The Association of the Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) should bring the East Sea issue to forums for discussion, he said, adding that ASEAN has its own principles, called “ASEAN Way,” which upholds respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of nations
These principles need to be heightened not only among ASEAN member states but also in the entire Southeast Asian region, the expert noted.
He further said that if a nation outside ASEAN violates territory of an ASEAN member state, then ASEAN is obliged to gather to seriously discuss this matter.
Sukadis also expected that negotiations on a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) between ASEAN and China will be fruitful.
Meanwhile, Assoc. Prof., Dr. Dinna Wisnu at the Department of International Relations, the Jakarta-based Bina Nusantara University said what China is doing in the East Sea is “unacceptable” and makes regional countries very concerned.
She urged regional countries to take stronger actions against China and that it is crucial to further strengthen bilateral agreements among ASEAN member states, particularly in economy, to create greater power and position for the grouping at international forums.