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FARVNMM 98
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FEDERATION OF ASSOCIATIONS OF THE REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM NAVY
AND MERCHANT MARINE

This is a declaration of FARVNMM as to the sovereignty of Vietnam with regard to Hoang Sa (Paracels) and Truong Sa (Spratly ) archipelagos.

This Declaration is made on this, the occasion of commemoration of the deaths of Marshal Tran Hung Dao and Academician Nguyen Trai, who were two great heroes contributing major efforts toward the defeat of the enemies from the North, the Mongols and the armies of the Ming dynasty. FARVNMM herewith expresses its view regarding the sovereignty of Vietnam with respect to the above given archipelagos of Hoang Sa and Truong Sa.
This Declaration consists of four (4) articles as follows:
Article Number One:
There have been some occurrences of significance recently within the immediate area of Truong Sa. The Socialist Republic of Vietnam laid physical claim to two submerged coral reefs within the Spratly islands on September 8, 1998. The Beijing regime demanded the immediate withdrawal of physical presence on the Tu Chinh reefs. This is another instance of Beijing, it's unlawful sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos using vague and untruthful claims and statements. The occupancy of Hoang Sa by the People Republic of China in 1974 and the subsequent redrawing of the territorial map of the South China Sea by the Chinese government is an uncivilized act, shows contempt for international law and endangers world peace, security and stability in Asia.
Article Number Two:
To avert a direct confrontation, international intervention and to quiet the outrage of the Vietnamese people, the government of Hanoi and Beijing announced on September 29, 1998 that they would settle the territorial dispute in the year 2,000. For Vietnamese everywhere, this is a worrisome concession by the Hanoi government. In 1974, even though inferior in actual forces, and in a geographic location that was not to their advantage, the Republic of Vietnam Navy gallantly fought the Chinese Navy in a sea battle around Hoang Sa, the Hanoi government bowed its head and conceded to the Chinese master. The Hanoi government can not fight at the conference table, how the Vietnamese people can believe in the Hanoi government's capability, should the settlement not come to fruition in the year 2,000 and the two countries have to result to confrontation again. For the Beijing government, it is the age old trick of using time to control the outcome as they continue to maintain their physical presence and ignoring the rules of international law. When one considers the activities of the Chinese government in the areas of Hoang Sa and Truong Sa since 1974 and also the hundreds of invasions, and persecutions of the Vietnamese people since the birth of Vietnam, four thousand years ago as proof enough of these acts being ones of invasion and suppression.
Article Number Three:
The FARVNMM strongly believes in the sovereignty of Vietnam over the Tu Chinh reefs, as well as Hoang Sa and Truong Sa. There is unquivocable historical and documented proof with testimonial of witnesses to confirm the sovereignty of Vietnam over these islands. The most important witnesses are naval officers and sailors who have shed their blood in the defense of these islands.
Article Number Four:
FARVNMM sincerely and earnestly request the Vietnamese people remaining in the homeland to demand that Hanoi have the courage and determination to protect the sovereignty of Vietnam and control of these islands at the conference table and on the Bien Dong (East Sea) , if required.
FARVNMM sincerely request all Vietnamese people residing outside of the homeland to bring all the possible pressure on governments and institutions, such as motions in the United Nations, demonstrations in protest against the Chinese invasions at their diplomatic offices, circulation of documents of protest, motivation for other Vietnamese to gain support of the local populace and the governments of the countries in which they reside.
General Statement:
Communism will not exist in Vietnam forever and change is not so far away. When change comes, our beautiful country will be back in the hands of those whom truly love freedom, democracy, and justice. All Vietnamese people, both in the homeland and overseas will defend every square foot of our homeland for which our ancestors sacrificed bone, blood and life to build and bequeath to us.

Written in San Diego, on October 8,1998
FARVNMM