Trump and Vietnam's president underscore free and open access to South China Sea

Vietnam's President Tran Dai Quang and U.S. President Donald Trump review troops before their bilateral meeting at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam November 12, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

(Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang underscored the importance of free and open access to South China Sea, in a joint statement issued on Sunday.

The two leaders called for the “full and effective implementation” of the declaration on the conduct of parties in the South China Sea, and for all claimants to clarify their maritime claims.

Trump and Vietnam’s Quang said parties should halt escalatory action and militarisation of disputed features.

Reporting by Mi Nguyen, editing by Larry King