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Taiwan reasserts sovereignty over Taiping amid Vietnam protest

2012/05/10 23:27:07

Taipei, May 10 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday reasserted Taiwan's sovereignty over Taiping Island, a disputed island in the South China Sea, shortly after Vietnam protested against Taiwanese officials paying a visit there.

Taiping Island is Taiwan's undisputed territory, according to a statement released by the ministry.

Late last month, a group of Taiwanese lawmakers made an unannounced visit to Taiping Island, the largest island in the Spratlys in the contested South China Sea, for a brief inspection tour.

Taiwan, China and other countries in Southeast Asia claim all or part of the Spratlys, whose surrounding waters are said to be rich in oil reserves.

Taiwan has always advocated shelving the disputes and jointly developing the area's resources with neighboring countries on the principle of peace and reciprocity, it said.

Acknowledging the friendship and long-term cooperation between both sides, the ministry urged Vietnam to solve the dispute through negotiations and peaceful or non-provocative means, it added.

(By Nancy Liu)
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