Background Briefing:Vietnam: InternationalWorkshop on South China Sea,Quang Ngai CityCarlyle A. ThayerMay 18, 2013
[client name deleted]Q1 Could you provide a brief introduction of the international workshop youattended in Quang Ngai City?ANSWER: This was the first international workshop on the South China Sea to beheld outside of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. It was hosted by Pham Van DongUniversity but held in the Petrosetco Tower Hotel in Quang Ngai City. Theconference was focused specifically on the historical and legal claims to the Paraceland Spratly islands.Although the workshop only lasted one day the program was very intense. Theworkshop was divided into two 2-hour sessions. The first session focused on
International Law and a Nation’s Historical Sovereignty. There were seven
presentations, five by foreign scholars and two by Vietnamese experts. The foreignscholars came from Australia, India and three from the United States includingProfessor Ngo Vinh Long, University of Maine. The Vietnamese specialists were well
known at home and abroad, they included Professor Do Tien Sam one of Vietnam’s
foremost experts on China and Hoang Viet an expert on international law at the HoChi Minh City University of Law.The second sessions focused on Historical and Legal Sovereignty of Vietnam Over theParacel and Spratly Islands. There were six presentations equally divided betweenAmerican and Vietnamese experts. It was notable that two of the Americanpresenters were overseas Vietnamese, Ho Bach Thao and Nguyen Trong Binh.Each session was co-chaired. Speakers were limited to fifteen minutes and there wasplenty of time for discussion.The workshop included thirty-two officially registered participants, seventeenforeigners and fifteen Vietnamese. The foreigners came from a diverse range of countries: Australia, Canada, India, Italy, Philippines, Russia, South Korea, Taiwan,and the United States.Q2. Do you think it is useful (or not), compared with other international workshopson the South China Sea held in Vietnam? Do you think Vietnam can continue toorganize such workshops?
ABN # 65 648 097 123