Daily Trends Now
Daily Trends Now

United States aircraft carrier arrives in Vietnam for landmark visit

United States aircraft carrier arrives in Vietnam for landmark visit

In July 2016, an worldwide court ruled that the so-called "nine-dash line"-a demarcation line China uses to lay claim to parts of the South China Sea-is inconsistent with global laws governing maritime resources".

"Even as it moves forward with the U.S., Vietnam has been engaging China over South China Sea tensions", said Le Hong Hiep, a Vietnam expert at Singapore's ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute. "They are anxious about where China is going, and they have wanted for years now to have a better relationship with the United States", John Kirby, a retired US Navy rear admiral, told CNN. They also reiterated the importance of, and the need for complete compliance with global law, notably the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea 1982 (UNCLOS), including the implementation of worldwide legal obligations in good faith, the maintenance of freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea, full respect for diplomatic and legal processes, peaceful settlement of disputes without resorting to the threat or use of force, and in accordance with worldwide law. Some US sailors will also visit a center for victims of Agent Orange, the toxic chemical compound used by the US during the conflict to destroy jungles and forests. A number of nations have competing territorial claims in the South China Sea region.

The Filipino leader has refused to pursue a landmark 2016 global tribunal ruling in Manila's favor over its competing claims with Beijing. Without referring to China's one-belt-one-road (OBOR) that has raised hackles in many countries including India, both sides chose to focus on an alternative connective mechanism.

Ties between the wartime enemies have warmed in recent years, especially under former US President Barack Obama, who in 2016 lifted a decades-old arms embargo.

U.S. aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson arrives at a port in Danang, Vietnam Monday. "I am confident that engagements like this will further expand the comprehensive partnership between the United States and Vietnam".

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In addition to Vietnam, the U.S. is also tightening military cooperation with long-standing allies Australia, Japan and India. The vessel can carry up to 90 on-deck aircraft.

The presence of the USS Carl Vinson, a U.S. Navy supercarrier, highlights the growing alliance between the U.S. and its erstwhile foe, and it could rattle the regional superpower China. The docking of the vast vessel, which can support up to 90 aircraft, will represent the largest United States military presence in Vietnam since the end of many years of bitter conflict and after the country was unified in 1975. "The United States and Vietnam are cooperating more closely than ever before".

Vietnam Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang said the visit underscores its good relations with the US and contributes to "maintaining peace, stability, security, cooperation and development in the region".

"The carrier has not been here [in Vietnam] for 40 years".


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