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Aug 27, 2022 / 18:12

World Meteorological Organization removes Nine-dash line after Vietnam’s protest

The United Nations’ specialized agency removed Beijing’s so-called map shortly after flows of protests made by Vietnamese officials and netizens, including many from Hanoi.

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) has removed China’s unilaterally-claimed U-shape or Nine-dash line from its Facebook page after facing protest from Vietnam.

On August 27, the WMO edited its entry on China’s heatwave with a map containing no Nine-dash line as it initially posted on August 23.

According to the editing log, the entry was edited on August 25.

 The map which was edited on the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)'s Facebook on August 27. Source: WMO

The move was followed by the protest that was officially made by Spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang of Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs at a press conference on August 25. “Vietnam demands that countries and organizations respect Vietnam’s sovereign rights over Hoang Sa (Paracels) and Truong Sa (Spratlys) archipelagoes, and adjacent waters in the East Sea (referring to the South China Sea) and remove and alter any offensive information,” Hang said in a statement.  

She said Vietnam has repeatedly rejected the so-called Nine-dash line as well as maritime claims contrary to international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Vietnam believes that all forms of disseminating content and images infringing on Vietnam’s sovereignty over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes, as well as national sovereignty and jurisdiction over relevant waters in the East Sea established in accordance with UNCLOS is null and void, Hang emphasized.

According to Hang, representatives of Vietnam’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations, the World Trade Organization (WTO), and other international organizations in Geneva had discussed this matter with representatives of the WMO.

The World Meteorological Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for promoting international cooperation in atmospheric science, climatology, hydrology and geophysics.

Below this post on the illegal map, hundreds of comments from Vietnamese netizens protested WMO and demanded removal. Joining netizens protesting the Chinese Nine-dash line includes many people from Hanoi. They were asserting that Beijing’s unilateral map is totally illegal and called for withdrawal from the sites containing it. 

Vietnam is pushing back on Chinese claims over the South China Sea targeting Beijing’s so-called nine-dash line, which also faces protests by regional countries and the rest of the international community.

In 2016, a Hague-based international tribunal, the Permanent Court of Arbitration, threw out Beijing’s 9-dash line and its territorial claims in the South China Sea. 

 The map included in an entry posted on August 23.