Situated from the eastern shore of mainland Southeast Asia, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (SRV) has actually an area of 329, 560 sq km (127, 244 sq mi), extending 1, 650 kilometer (1, 025 mi) N – S and 600 km (373 mi) E – W . Comparatively, the region occupied by Vietnam is somewhat larger than the state of brand new Mexico. At its narrowest, Vietnam is only 50 km (31 mi) across. The world is bordered on the N by China, from the E by the Gulf of Tonkin, in the E and S because of the South Asia Sea, regarding the SW by the Gulf of Thailand, as well as on the W by Cambodia and Laos, with a total land boundary of 4, 639 kilometer (2, 883 mi) and a coastline of 3, 444 km (2, 140 mi). Before unification, that has been proclaimed on 3 July 1976, Vietnam ended up being divided in two because of the 17th parallel. South was the Republic of Vietnam (RVN), also called South Vietnam; towards north, the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV), also referred to as North Vietnam.
Vietnam, Asia, the Philippines, Brunei, Taiwan, and Malaysia claim all or part of the Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands, located in the Southern China water around 600 km (350 mi) east of Ho Chi Minh City and 400 km (250 mi) east of Da Nang, respectively. The Paracel Islands are known in Vietnamese given that Hoang Sa archipelago, and the Spratlys as Truong Sa. Both archipelagoes are reportedly enclosed by rich undersea oil reserves, and tend to be effective fishing grounds. China features occupied the Paracel Islands since 1974, whenever Chinese soldiers drove a-south Vietnamese garrison from western islands. Vietnam consumes six of the Spratlys, and has now unsuccessfully involved with negotiations with Malaysia in addition to Philippines within the remainder. Regular clashes between Chinese and Vietnamese naval causes have taken devote the area of both island teams.