State President Truong Tan Sang welcomed the first-ever trip by US Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter in Hanoi on June 1, saying that his visit came in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of diplomatic ties.

The two countries have been looking towards the future, manifested by the establishment of comprehensive partnership, regular high-level exchanges with the highlight of the upcoming visit by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, and meetings at the 2015 United Nations forums, the President said, adding that such occasions afford opportunities to talk about issues concerning peace and stability in the region and the world.

He also asked for early conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations and fully lifting ban on weapon sales to Vietnam.

Vietnam is ready to continue working with the US on humanitarian issues such as search for remains of missing-in-action US servicemen, bomb and mine clearance, Agent Orange/dioxin detoxification in Da Nang and Bien Hoa, the State leader declared.

Thanking the US for its support in improving the capacity of search-and-rescue forces, the host urged the US to provide all necessary assistance to Vietnam in raising the capacity of maritime law enforcement forces.

On the East Sea issue, he stressed that Vietnam continually pursues the policy of building a prosperous, independent and self-reliant country with hope to partner with countries on the basis of solidarity and friendship.

The host said any dispute in the East Sea should be addressed via peaceful dialogues and respect to international law, especially the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea, towards the formulation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea.

Vietnam wants countries to deliver on their promises at international forums, including exercising self-restraint and refraining from the use of forces, he said, adding that Vietnam is steadfast to strongly protesting actions that may change the status quo in the East Sea for military purpose and violate international law.

According to him, the irrelevance of China’s self-claimed “nine-dot” line in the East Sea is complicating the issue, and Vietnam welcomes all countries that support the country and the ASEAN’s stance on the settlement of emerging issue in the East Sea.

Carter said US President Obama is looking forward to the upcoming visit by the Vietnamese Party chief, adding that it will be a historic visit in the history of bilateral ties.

The guest said Vietnam and the US share similar position regarding peace, security and maritime safety in the East Sea which will be discussed more in the coming time.-VNA