Toward the establishment of the subject “Maritime archaeology in Vietnam”
Participating at the workshop were Assoc.Prof.Dr Nguyen Van Kim (Vice Rector); Assoc.Prof.Dr Lam Thi My Dung, (Director of the Museum of Anthropology) and representatives of 16 related departments, including leading research institutes in Vietnam such as Institute for Southeast Asian studies and Institute for Archaeology.
Speaking at the workshop, Assoc.Prof.Dr Nguyen Van Kim confirmed the importance of archaeology in the protection of national maritime sovereignty: “The workshop gathers representatives from 16 departments and 29 papers, with an analytical, integrated, and interdisciplinary approach. With this approach, the scientists in this workshop today are bound to provide an objective and comprehensive outlook on the position of Vietnamese sea, the role of the sea in developing cultures, old empires, and the very arduous making and protection of maritime sovereignty of Vietnam”. Given the recent high developments in the East Sea, it is imperative to include the subject “Maritime archaeology in Vietnam” in the upcoming curriculum.
Among 29 papers were important reports on the claims on maritime sovereignty of Vietnam such as “Archeological documents to confirm the maritime sovereignty of Vietnam over the Spratly and Paracel islands” by Prof.Dr Nguyen Quang Ngoc (Institute for Vietnamese studies and Developmental Sciences, VNU, “archeological discoveries in the Spratly and Paracel islands” by Dr. Lai Van Toi (Center for Imperial Court Research). In fact since 2014, China has been making illegal archeological activities around the Spratly islands of Vietnam and claimed to apply World Heritage status for the “South China Sea [East Sea in Vietnamese] Silk Road”, thus archeological documents that could verify Vietnam’s sovereignty over Spratly and Paracel islands are important.