Colombia, Cuba, South Africa join Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia hinh anh 1Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (sixth from left) and other delegates at the signing ceremony (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The signing ceremony of the instruments of accession to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) by Colombia, Cuba and South Africa was held online on November 10.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh, and other ASEAN Foreign Ministers witnessed the signing cremony.

In his remarks, Minh said the expansion of the treaty has reflected ASEAN’s position and role in enhancing cooperation, and in promoting peace and security in the region and the world.

The TAC was signed in Bali, Indonesia, in February 1976, with 40 signitories so far. Since its signing and entry into force, the treaty has become a key instrument governing relations between states to maintain regional peace and stability as well as one of the key codes of conduct in ASEAN’s central regional architecture.

In recent years, there is a growing interest of non-ASEAN member states in the treaty, he said, adding that the accession by Colombia, Cuba and South Africa to the TAC will further contribute to the reinforcement of importance and relevance of the treaty’s purposes and principles which encompass the peaceful settlement of disputes and resolutions of differences.

Minh called on the three countries to commit themselves to the purposes and strive further to strengthen cooperation with ASEAN while contributing to promoting peace and security in the region and beyond.

He also expressed his hope for more commitments, saying substantial and concrete actions should be put forth and taken to work towards a more peaceful, stable and prosperous region and the world.
Cuban FM Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla recognised the work of Vietnam and ASEAN in the COVID-19 fight, and expressed his condolences to Cambodia, the Philippines, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam over the heavy human and property losses caused by recent weather calamities. This shows the need to continue sharing the best experience in coping with natural disasters, he said.

The signing takes place in an international context that shows the values of solidarity and cooperation to control global challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the minister said.

He pledged to cooperate with ASEAN in biotechnology, pharmacy, medical services, Spanish language teaching, culture, sports, and strategies to address climate change, suggesting the establishment of a joint biotech research and development centre in ASEAN and the conduction of clinical tests./.