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The 12th Regular Press Conference 23/08/2018


I. ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. President Tran Dai Quang and Spouse to pay a State Visit to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Arabian Republic of Egypt (23 – 29 August 2018)

At the invitation of the President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Mulatu Teshome and the President of the Arabian Republic of Egypt Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, President Tran Dai Quang and Spouse shall pay a State Visit to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Arabian Republic of Egypt from 23 to 29 August 2018.

The State visit by the President and Spouse aims to strengthen the friendship and cooperation between Viet Nam and Ethiopia and Egypt, promote areas of positive ongoing cooperation, and create momentum for potential areas in future, such as trade, investment, telecommunication and infrastructure, as well as investment opportunities for businesses of the two countries.

In Ethiopia, President Tran Dai Quang shall meet with Ethiopian President, Prime Minister, Speakers of the House of Federation and the House of Peoples & Representatives, and hold a working session with the African Union.

In Egypt, President Tran Dai Quang shall meet with Egyptian President, Prime Minister and Speaker of the Parliament, pay a visit to the Governorate of Luxor, and hold a number of other activities.

2. Indian Minister of External Affairs to visit Viet Nam and co-chair the 16th Meeting of the Viet Nam – India Joint Committee (27-28 August 2018)

From 27 to 28 August 2018, the 16 th Meeting of the Viet Nam – India Joint Committee shall be held in Hanoi. Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh and the Indian Minister of External Affairs Mdm. Sushma Swaraj shall co-chair the Meeting.

At the Meeting, the two sides shall review bilateral cooperation across all areas, discuss measures to promote investment and to address outstanding issues, and set the direction for future cooperation. The two sides shall also discuss regional and international issues of common interest.

During her visit to Viet Nam, the Indian Minister of External Affairs shall pay a courtesy call to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

3. The third Indian Ocean Conference (27-28 August 2018)

From 27 to 28 August 2018 in Hanoi, the Diplomatic Academy of Viet Nam (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), in conjunction with the India Foundation, shall organize the Indian Ocean Conference, under the theme of “Building Regional Architectures”. It is expected that the Conference shall be attended by about 300 Vietnamese and international leaders, officials, scholars and business representatives. Deputy Prime Minister, Minister Pham Binh Minh shall attend and deliver a keynote speech at the Conference.

The third Indian Ocean Conference shall focus on discussing security, economic and trade issues in the Indian Ocean and adjacent Indo-Pacific region, the emerging regional architecture as well as cooperation between countries concerned in building confidence, respecting international standards and laws, settling disputes peacefully, governing the oceans, and addressing non-traditional security challenges at sea.

II. Q&A

Q: Monsanto was ruled to pay $289 mil in compensation for their herbicides. Could you provide Vietnamese reaction to the ruling and possibility of Monsanto’s compensation for Vietnamese victims?

A: Viet Nam has suffered tremendous consequences from the war, including the lingering and severe effects of agent orange/dioxin. We support San Francisco Court’s ruling on August 10th that Monsanto to pay $289 million to a US citizen in compensation for health damage caused by its herbicides.

The ruling serves as a legal precedent which rejects previous claims that the herbicides Monsanto and U.S. chemical producers provided for the U.S. army during the war in Viet Nam caused no harm to human health. We are of the view that Monsanto is liable for compensation for the damage caused by the agent orange/dioxin in Viet Nam.

Q: What is Viet Nam’s reaction to Taiwan’s live fire drill in area surrounding Ba Binh Island?

A: That Taiwan continues to hold live-fire drill in the sea surrounding Ba Binh island, Truong Sa archipelago, where Viet Nam has sufficient legal ground and historical evidence for sovereignty in accordance with international law, is a violation of Viet Nam's sovereignty over the archipelago, threatening peace, stability, navigation and aviation security and safety, causing tensions and making the situation on the East Sea more complicated." Viet Nam again resolutely objects and requests Taiwan to end and not to repeat similar actions.

Q: As the host of 3rd Indian Ocean Conference, what is Viet Nam’s view? What issues would Viet Nam like to advance? And is the South China Sea issue on the agenda at the conference?

A: The 3rd Indian Ocean Conference will focus on economic, trade and security issues in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. We will discuss cooperation on the basis of respect for international norms and laws, non-inclusion, enhancing ASEAN's central role and contributing to peace, cooperation and development in the region and in the world.

Q: The Philippines has raised concerns over the possibility of China deploying nuclear weapons to the South China Sea. What is Viet Nam’s reaction?

A: Maintaining peace, stability, navigation and aviation security and safety in the East Sea (South China Sea) is shared interest and responsibility of countries in the region and the world. Therefore, all parties concerned have an obligation to contribute to this goal.

Q: Could you please provide updates on Doan Thi Huong? What is Viet Nam’s opinion for this case? Will Viet Nam assist Doan Thi Huong’s family in travelling to Malaysia?

A: According to the Viet Nam’s Embassy in Malaysia, at the hearing on 16 August 2018, after considering lawyers’ and prosecutors’ claims, the Shah Alam High Court, Selangor, Malaysia ruled that the charges had been proved by prosecutors and the defendants to enter their defense. Vietnamese citizen Doan Thi Huong will have to enter defense before the court on 7-10 January, 28-31 January and 18-19 February 2019. The Vietnamese Embassy sent representatives to the hearing and met with Doan Thi Huong. The Embassy will continue to work with lawyers to provide assistance for Doan Thi Huong in following hearings to protect her legitimate rights and interests.

If her family wishes and based on consultation with lawyers for the best interest of Doan Thi Huong, the Embassy and Vietnamese agencies will assist her family in relevant procedures in line with Malaysia’s laws./.

 
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