📝 OP-ED: Defence diplomacy contributes to protecting Fatherland early, from afar hinh anh 1
Hanoi (VNA) – Defence diplomacy is an important part of the external policy of the Vietnamese Party and State. Over the years, with the motto of protecting the Fatherland early and from afar through peaceful measures, defence diplomatic activities have been carried out in a diverse and effective manner, positively contributing to the country’s international integration. 

This year, various defence diplomatic activities have been implemented at all levels, including the seventh Vietnam-China border defence friendship exchange, the first Vietnam-Cambodia border defence friendship exchange, activities marking the Vietnam-Laos, Vietnam-Cambodia friendship years, the celebration of the 45th anniversary of Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen’s journey to overthrow the Pol Pot genocidal regime, and the first international coast guard exchange, among others.

📝 OP-ED: Defence diplomacy contributes to protecting Fatherland early, from afar hinh anh 2President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang take a photo with officers of the Military Engineering Unit Rotation 1 and the Level-2 Field Hospital Rotation 4 before their departure to UN peacekeeping missions (Photo: VNA)
Besides, leaders of the Ministry of National Defence attended the 19th Shangri La Dialogue and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) and ADMM Plus as well as many international military and defence activities and received high evaluation of international friends. 

In order to improve the effectiveness of defence cooperation, besides multilateral activities, Vietnam has continued to strengthen collaboration with neighbouring countries, great powers, strategic partners, ASEAN countries, and traditional friends in the field of military and defence.

During the year, Vietnam also received many foreign defence chiefs, contributing to strengthening the bilateral defence ties between Vietnam and partner countries.

In particular, the international defence exhibition Vietnam Defence 2022, which took place at Gia Lam military airport in Hanoi from December 8-10, was a highlight of the Vietnamese defence diplomacy, which gathered more than 170 defence businesses from 30 countries and over 250 domestic and foreign delegations. 
📝 OP-ED: Defence diplomacy contributes to protecting Fatherland early, from afar hinh anh 3Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang (R) and his Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe (Photo: VNA)
The event, the first of its kind, was a new step forwards in international defence integration of Vietnam. It offered an opportunity for participants to introduce and display their technological products, weapons and equipment, explore the development trend of weapons and technical equipment. It was also a chance for the Vietnam People’s Army (VPA) to diversify channels of cooperation, procurement, receipt and transfer of production technologies and improve of weapons and equipment.

According to Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang, the Party and State aim to strengthen the defence capacity in order to firmly protect national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity as well as national interests, and perform international missions. Therefore, the VPA wants to promote international integration and defence cooperation with all countries, not only in modernising weapons and military equipment, but also in sharing experience and fostering solidarity with the defence ministries and armed forces of all countries in the region and the world for peaceful purposes.   

General Giang held that the exhibition gave a chance for defence researchers and producers as well as armed forces to meet and seek partnership, contributing to building trust and promoting defence cooperation and defence industry collaboration for common benefits.

📝 OP-ED: Defence diplomacy contributes to protecting Fatherland early, from afar hinh anh 4A performance of Vietnamese air force at the Vietnam Defence 2022 (Photo: VNA)
The resolution of the 13th National Party Congress and Resolution 22-NQ/TW of the Politburo have underlined the need to actively and proactively engage in multilateral mechanisms in defence and security, including involvement in cooperation at higher levels such as the United Nation peacekeeping operations.

The policy has been specified in the Central Military Commission’s Resolution 806 on international cooperation and defence policy as well as the Vietnam Defence White Book 2019, which said the safeguarding of the nation must be conducted early and from afar by peaceful measures, building and fostering trust for national interests, maintaining peaceful and stable environment for national development. They also pointed out that Vietnam will continue to make substantive contributions to and expand the scale of engagement in UN peacekeeping operations. 

The sending of forces to UN peacekeeping missions has a significant meaning amidst the extensive international integration, which has generated encouraging results.

Major General Hoang Kim Phung, Director of the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations, said that Vietnam has so far sent 516 officers to UN peacekeeping missions in Abyei, South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the UN headquarters.

Particularly in 2022, the country deployed two officers as training advisors to the UN missions in Central Africa for the first time. Recently, four officers have been assigned to the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission (MINUSCA) in the Central African Republic.

📝 OP-ED: Defence diplomacy contributes to protecting Fatherland early, from afar hinh anh 5The Military Engineering Unit Rotation 2 and vehicles ready for departure (Photo: VNA)
The UN missions and agencies commented that Vietnamese officers have exerted efforts in implementing their tasks with high level of professionalism, discipline and creativeness, leaving good impressions among leaders of the missions, international colleagues and local residents.

Major General Phung said that in order to prepare forces to replace the on-duty officers at UN peacekeeping missions, the department has taken initiative in selecting officers with high qualifications and organizing training courses for them, as well as sending a number of officials abroad for training.

In the time to come, Vietnam plans to deploy the Military Engineering Unit Rotation 2 and the Level-2 Field Hospital Rotation 5 to UN missions, and complete a project to build a national coordination centre on UN peacekeeping, he said./.