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US to partially lift ban on arms sales to Viet Nam

Update: October, 04/2014 - 09:39
Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (L) speaks ahead of a working lunch with US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) on October 2, 2014 at the State Department in Washington, DC. — AFP/VNA/VNS PHOTO
WASHINGTON  (VNS)  — The United States would partially lift its ban on selling arms to Viet Nam to help the nation's maritime security, US Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Thursday during talks with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh in Washington.

Minh visited the US at Kerry's invitation. During the talks, Kerry and Minh said they were delighted at the progress made in Viet Nam-US relations since the establishment of a comprehensive partnership in July 2013.

Kerry said the US appreciated Viet Nam's role in the Southeast Asian region and wished to continue its collaboration with the country.

Both he and Minh agreed that the nations involved in the East Sea situation should avoid actions that could escalate the dispute and cause instability in the region.

They also agreed that involved parties need to settle the dispute peacefully, in line with international law.

Minh asked the US to provide technical assistance to Viet Nam during the negotiation and implementation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, and to recognise Viet Nam's market economy. He also proposed increased co-operation on technology, education, and war legacy settlement between the two countries.

Kerry said the US would consider Viet Nam's proposals and extend its support to settle war consequences, including the effects of Agent Orange and unexploded ordnance. The US would also move forward on establishing a Fulbright University in Viet Nam, Kerry said.

In a separate meeting with Minh, US National Security Advisor Susan Rice said the US would continue implementing its rebalancing strategy in the region.

The Vietnamese official also met with US Trade Representative Michael Froman, who agreed to foster economic-trade relations and work harder to conclude the TPP agreement negotiations soon.

On October 1, Minh presented a report titled A New Era in US-Viet Nam Relations: Deepening Ties Two Decades after Normalisation during a ceremony at the Washington Centre for Strategic and International Studies. — VNS

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