Sen. Lieut. Gen. Phạm Văn Giang, Chief of the General Staff of the VPA and deputy defence minister (r) receives Commanding General of the US Army Pacific Command (USARPAC) Robert B. Brown in Hà Nội on Monday. – VNA/VNS Photo Khổng Minh Khánh
HÀ NỘI – The 42nd Pacific Armies Management Seminar (PAMS 42), themed “Cooperation Among Indo-Asian Pacific Land Forces in Humanitarian Assistance, Disaster Response”, opened in Hà Nội on Monday.
The event was co-chaired by Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Việt Nam People’s Army (VPA), Senior Lieutenant General Pham Hồng Hương, and Commanding General of the US Army Pacific Command (USARPAC) Robert B. Brown.
Co-hosted by the General Staff of the VPA and the USARPAC, the four-day event attracted representatives from land forces in 27 countries, namely the UK, India, Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, Fiji, the Republic of Korea, the US, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Mongolia, Nepal, Japan, Japan, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, France, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, China and Việt Nam.
Three plenary sessions will take place, on land forces’ initial responses to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, multilateral cooperation, and enhancing the role of regional cooperation in the effort.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Sen. Lieut. Gen. Phạm Văn Giang, Chief of the General Staff of the VPA and deputy defence minister, said the Indo-Asia-Pacific frequently faces various natural disasters such as typhoons, earthquakes, tsunamis and volcano eruptions due to climate change and global warming.
Aware of the need to enhance cooperation in and outside the region to cope with non-traditional challenges and offer humanitarian assistance and disaster response in particular, armies in Southeast Asia have promoted initiatives such as establishing the ASEAN Militaries Ready Group and issuing a Code of Conduct on the use of military assets in humanitarian assistance and disaster response, he said.
These were practical activities to realise the goal of One ASEAN – One Response adopted by ASEAN leaders in Vientiane, Laos in 2016, he added.
Giang expressed his belief that joint work against common challenges will connect armies together, laying a foundation for collaboration in other fields for the sake of regional peace, stability and development.
On the sidelines of PAMS 42, the USARPAC will hold the fourth Senior Enlisted Leaders’ Symposium and invite the Vietnamese defence ministry to engage as an observer. Several group discussions, bilateral meetings and collective exchange activities are also planned.
Following the opening ceremony, Sen Lieut Gen Hương and General Brown co-chaired a press conference to provide basic information about the seminar.
Hương said PAMS 42 contributes to strengthening friendship, mutual understanding and trust between the Vietnamese army and those in the Indo-Asia-Pacific as well as reflects the active, proactive and responsible role of the VPA in the region’s common issues. — VNS