U.S. President Barack Obama called for the "peaceful resolution" of disputes in the South China Sea in a speech in Hanoi.
"In the South China Sea, the U.S. is not a claimant in current disputes, but we will stand with our partners in upholding key principles like freedom of navigation," Obama said. His remarks came the day after the U.S. lifted a decades-long ban on the sale of lethal weapons to Vietnam.
"Vietnam will have greater access to the equipment you need to improve your security," Obama said. "Nations are sovereign and no matter how large or small a nation may be its territory should be respected."