Vietnam has protested against a Chinese military drill in the contested South China Sea and has demanded that China stop the actions it says are a threat to security and maritime safety.

China announced that it will carry out the week-long military drills on and around the Paracel islands starting Tuesday. They will finish on the eve of a ruling by an international tribunal in a case filed by the Philippines challenging China's claims to most of the South China Sea.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Le Hai Binh said in a statement posted late Monday on the ministry's website that China's moves seriously violate Vietnamese sovereignty and demanded that China stop the drills.