ASEAN defence chiefs stressed the need for building a peaceful environment in the East Sea. — VNA/VNS Photo Pham Kien
VIENTIANE (VNS) — ASEAN defence chiefs stressed the need for building a peaceful environment in the East Sea to promote stability, growth and prosperity in the region at the closing ceremony of the 13th ASEAN Chiefs of Defence Forces Informal Meeting (ACDFIM-13) in Vientiane, Laos, yesterday.
Participants said non-traditional security challenges such as natural disasters, climate change, cross-border crime, human and drug trafficking, cyber and navigation security, and terrorism had threatened regional peace, stability, security and prosperity.
To deal with them, it is necessary to enhance defence co-operation among ASEAN member states in the principle of respecting the sovereignty of each country. The defence chiefs called on the involved parties to fully implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and reach a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).
Speaking at the function, General Đỗ Bá Tỵ, Chief of the General Staff of the Việt Nam People’s Army and Deputy Defence Minister, said ASEAN was facing a number of challenges such as terrorism, racial conflicts, natural disasters, and illegal actions against international law.
He proposed countries further exchange information and experience to cope with the challenges, stressing that Việt Nam condemned terror attacks under any form and it was willing to co-operate with other nations to deal with the issue.
The head of the Vietnamese delegation also suggested increasing activities to build trust between law enforcement forces at sea and abiding by international law.
He asked these forces to support fishermen in distress and offer humanitarian treatment for them.
The Việt Nam People’s Army had actively engaged in ASEAN’s activities such as sending forces to join peacekeeping operations and humanitarian mine clearance in India, and participating in the exercise of humanitarian aid and natural disaster relief within the ASEAN Regional Forum in Malaysia and the International Fleet Review in India, Tỵ said.
He noted that Việt Nam would dispatch forces to attend “Komodo”, the multilateral naval exercise in Indonesia, and also attend a navigation security and an anti-corruption exercise in Brunei and Singapore.
At the end of the conference, heads of delegations signed a joint statement of ACDFIM-13, which mentions numerous regional security issues, including the necessity of implementing fully and effectively the DOC and the completion of the COC to maintain peace in the East Sea. — VNS