Vietnam dispatches 29 ships to intercept Chinese oil rig in South China Sea; standoff with Chinese ships

Case of Lilliput versus Gulliver?

China Daily Mail

CNOOC 981 CNOOC 981

Vietnamese naval vessels and Chinese ships collided Wednesday, a Vietnamese government official said, as Hanoi sought to prevent a Chinese oil rig from setting up in a disputed part of the South China Sea.

The official said no ammunition had been fired and there were no reports for injuries as a result of the standoff, the most serious in years between the two countries in the sea. If neither side step downs, some analysts said they feared full blown skirmishes could break out between the two navies in what has long been regarded as a possible global flashpoint.

China‘s stationing of the oil rig over the weekend has been seen as one of its most provocative steps in a gradual campaign of asserting its sovereignty in the South China Sea, parts of which are also claimed by Vietnam, the Philippines and other smaller Southeast Asian nations.

Two…

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