Officials from ASEAN and the RoK take a group photo during the 2019 ASEAN-RoK Defence Vice Ministerial Talks in Seoul on Wednesday. — VNA/VNS Photo
SEOUL — Việt Nam backs the Republic of Korea to foster a comprehensive defence partnership with ASEAN, Deputy Minister of National Defence Nguyễn Chí Vịnh told the ASEAN-RoK vice defence ministerial meeting in Seoul on Wednesday.
At the meeting, Vịnh and his counterparts from the RoK and other ASEAN states assessed the 30 years of cooperation between the two sides and discussed how to improve ties.
In his opening remarks, Korean Vice Defence Minister Park Jae-min said the RoK views ASEAN as a top priority partner in its foreign policy on a principle of ASEAN consensus and centrality.
The two sides have expanded high-level cooperation on the basis of common interests and together addressed traditional and non-traditional security threats, he said, voicing the RoK’s will to deepen ties with ASEAN within the working groups of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus (ADMM+) in maritime security, counter-terrorism and military medicine.
He also emphasised the need for cooperation between the two sides in cyber security.
Officials from ASEAN countries highly valued the results of the defence cooperation with the RoK, saying they expect bilateral ties will be more effective and fruitful, contributing to regional peace and stability.
Deputy Minister Vịnh said Việt Nam wants the RoK to pay more attention to key areas of the ADMM+ mechanism, such as maritime security and peacekeeping.
He noted that in light of globalisation and technological advancements, nations around the world are facing increasingly complex and borderless cyber challenges; so it is critical to step up international cooperation in cyber security.
The Vietnamese official hoped the cooperation will not only enhance experience and knowledge sharing but also have practical content and specific goals.
He moved on to say that as chair of ASEAN next year, Việt Nam attaches importance to intensifying cyber security cooperation within ASEAN and between the regional block and partners, and stands ready to bolster cooperation that benefits both sides as well as the international community.
Later the same day, Vịnh had a bilateral meeting with Singaporean Permanent Secretary of Defence Chan Yeng Kit where both sides expressed delight at defence cooperation between the two countries in recent years. They agreed disputes among major countries should not harm ASEAN unity as well as the bloc’s centrality in the regional cooperation mechanism. — VNS