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Senior officials’ meeting highlights ASEAN defence co-operation

Defence Minister General Tea Banh attends the meeting. MOD. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

HANOI, Nov 18, 2020, VNS. The ASEAN Defence Senior Officials’ Meeting (ADSOM) was held via video conference on Tuesday by the Ministry of Defence, chaired by Senior Lieutenant General Nguyễn Chí Vịnh, Deputy Defence Minister, and head of Việt Nam’s ADSOM, Vietnam News reported.

The meeting aimed to promote defence co-operation between ASEAN member countries and discuss preparations for the 14th ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) and the 17th ADMM Plus scheduled for next month.

Vịnh said defence ties among ASEAN member countries have contributed to COVID-19 prevention and control, including the joint declaration on defence co-operation against disease outbreaks which was adopted by defence ministers at their meeting in February and a virtual drill on mechanisms to deal with COVID-19 among military medical workers.

Vịnh highlighted the success of the ASEAN Defence Senior Officials’ Meeting Working Group on Monday. The meeting discussed ensuring the highest benefits of ASEAN member countries in defence co-operation as well as partners to submit to the upcoming 14th ADMM for consideration.

He said COVID-19 has harmed people around the world but with the spirit of ‘Cohesive and Responsive’, ASEAN countries have maintained multilateral co-operation activities within the ASEAN framework, demonstrated by a series of political, diplomatic, economic, national defence and security activities held in 2020 with the 37th ASEAN Summit and related meetings the highlight.

He thanked member countries for their support and co-ordination to help Việt Nam successfully fulfil its role as ASEAN Chair this year.

“We hoped to have direct meetings in Hà Nội by the year-end but due to the continuous development of the COVID-19, all related meetings within the ADMM framework will be held online,” Vịnh said.

He said he hoped that defence co-operation between ASEAN member countries would continue to demonstrate the solidarity, unity and responsibility of each country to help fulfil the defence co-operation target set for the region this year.

At the meeting, participants discussed new working standard for ADMM; operation plan of ADMM for 2020-22; draft joint declarations of the 14th ADMM and the 17th ADMM Plus scheduled to be held online next month.

They applauded Việt Nam’s efforts to organise the meeting in the context of COVID-19. ASEAN Deputy Secretary-General Hoàng Anh Tuấn said under Việt Nam’s ASEAN Chairmanship, ASEAN has gained much success in the context of difficulties caused by COVID-19.

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