Vietnam looks forward to continued support and contributions from fellow Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) member-states during its chairmanship of the Asean Community, and for the common interests and success of Asean 2020.
Lt. Gen. Vũ Chiến Thắng, director-general of the Department of Foreign Relations under the Ministry of Defense, made the statement at the opening ceremony of the Asean Defense Senior Officials (ADSOM) Working Group in the central city of Đà Nẵng on Thursday.
Thắng, who chaired the Working Group meeting, said Vietnam set the following objectives for this year, including in the Asean Defense Ministers Meeting (ADMM), promoting solidarity, consensus and centrality through consultation, sharing views and practical cooperation.
“Under the national theme ‘Cohesive and Responsive’ for the Asean Chairmanship 2020, the Ministry of Defense has chosen the theme ‘Defense cooperation for a cohesive and responsive ASEAN’ for the defense sector in 2020,” Thắng said.
“This has been reflected in the draft ‘Joint Declaration of the Asean Defense Ministers on Defense Cooperation for a ‘Cohesive and Responsive Asean’ that we will take into consideration today,” he added.
“On this occasion, I would like to express our sincere condolences to the families and friends of the victims who lost lives due to recent floods in Jakarta,” Thắng said at the opening event.
During the opening session, Thắng said: “This year will mark the 10th anniversary of the founding of ADMM-Plus. Vietnam is proud to have hosted the first ADMM-Plus in 2010. Since its establishment, ADMM-Plus has proven to be a unique, substantive cooperation mechanism and has attracted growing interests from non-Plus countries.”
“It also marks a special occasion, and Vietnam believes that we should have the ‘Joint Declaration by the ADMM-Plus Defense Ministers on Asia-Pacific Strategic Security Vision’, which serves as the guidelines for future regional defense cooperation in the next 10 years and beyond.”
He continued: “We have the Concept Paper on the Asean Flag to be displayed next to the National Flag at the Compound of Asean Military Units Participating in United Nations Peacekeeping Missions. This will contribute to promoting defense cooperation, while maintaining ASEAN centrality and consensus.”
The ADSOM Working Group, which has drawn the participation of 80 deputies from 10 Asean member- countries and Asean secretariat board, focused on the preparatory works for ADSOM, the 14th ADMM and ADMM-Plus.
It also reviewed the progressive defense cooperation process among Asean members and valued initiatives of Asean as well as discussing new proposals at the ADSOM Working Group.
Participants of the ADSOM Working Group also raised concerns on the defense cooperation plan for the next three-year term.
It expected that the ADMM-Plus will open on Friday with the participation of 10 ASEAN member-countries and eight dialogue countries from Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, the US, and Russia.
Asean members are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. (VNS)