Vietnam, RoK intensify defence collaboration hinh anh 1Deputy Minister of Defence Sen. Lieut. Gen. Nguyen Chi Vinh (Photo: VNA)

Seoul (VNA) – Deputy Minister of Defence Sen. Lieut. Gen. Nguyen Chi Vinh and his RoK counterpart Suh Choo-suk co-chaired the sixth Vietnam-the Republic of Korea (RoK) defence policy dialogue at deputy ministerial level in Seoul on September 8.

Deputy Minister Suh Choo-suk highlighted progress in cooperation between Vietnam and the RoK and the two defence ministries.

He said that the RoK is willing to support Vietnam in areas of Vietnam’s demand such as personnel training, foreign language teaching, overcoming war aftermath, including dioxin detoxification, bomb and mine clearance, and maritime security.

Besides, the RoK side will work closely with Vietnam in cyber security, including the training of experts and sharing of experience, the deputy minister said.

He particularly noted the joint work in peace keeping, with the RoK sharing with Vietnam its experience in the UN peace-keeping activities through the exchanges of delegation and personnel training assistance on the foundation of a cooperation agreement signed in September 2015.

Deputy Minister Vinh said that it is necessary to take a new approach to collaboration to cope with newly-emerging security challenges such as those related to cyber security, genetic modification, biotechnology, robot, and artificial intelligence.

He held that the two countries have built close defence cooperation across many areas.

Especially, the RoK has assisted Vietnam greatly in overcoming war aftermaths. Recently, the country offered 20 million USD to Vietnam for bomb and mine clearance in some central localities, he noted.

At the same time, the Vietnam-RoK maritime security affiliation has also been fruitful, contributing to the safeguarding of Vietnam’s sovereignty and maritime routes in one of the most complicated area in the world.

The RoK’s present of three second-hand vessels to the Vietnam Coast Guard has greatly helped with the operation of the force, said Vinh.

Regarding the situation in the Korean Peninsula, he confirmed Vietnam’s stance of supporting a nuclear weapon-free area, as well as the settlement of issues through peaceful measures in line with international law and with respect for interest of all parties.

The two sides also discussed a number of regional and international matters of shared concern.

The Vietnam-RoK defence policy dialogue at deputy ministerial level is held annually with the first one taking place in 2012.

During his stay in the RoK from September 6-9 to attend the sixth Seoul Defence Dialogue 2017 and the Vietnam-RoK defence policy dialogue, Deputy Defence Minister Nguyen Chi Vinh paid a courtesy call to RoK Minister of Defence Song Young-moo.

Song Young-moo extended an invitation to visit the RoK to his Vietnamese counterpart Ngo Xuan Lich. He said that the RoK hopes to sign a statement on joint vision on Vietnam-RoK defence cooperation during Lich’s visit.

On September 7, Deputy Minister Vinh led the Vietnamese delegation to attend the sixth Seoul Defence Dialogue 2017 (SDD), which is a multilateral dialogue and cooperation mechanism for discussion of regional and international issues.

The two-day dialogue brought together about 250 defence leaders and policy makers from more than 30 countries worldwide.

Themed “Visions for Security Cooperation in the Age of Uncertainty,” the four-session dialogue focused on nuclear and missile threats posed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and security on the Korean peninsula; measures to build trust at sea; challenges to cyber security and defence cooperation; new terrorist forms and global cooperation in counterterrorism.

The participants also looked into the fourth industrial revolution, defence science and technology, identities of future wars and defence policy.

As a keynote speaker at the opening ceremony, Australian Defence Minister Marise Payne stressed the significance of maintaining the law-based international order and avoiding the potential of conflicts.

Regarding bilateral defence cooperation between Australia and countries in the region, the minister said Australia has agreed to open English language classes to help Vietnam prepare for peace-keeping operations in South Sudan.

On September 6, deputy defence ministers of the RoK and ASEAN nations also engaged in a dialogue that looks towards a new Northeast Asia of peace and security.

Addressing the event, RoK Deputy Defence Minister Suh Choo-suk highlighted ASEAN’s key role in the region’s large-scale integration process, contributing to nurturing the practice of dialogue and cooperation between its member countries.

ASEAN has rolled out various multilateral cooperation mechanisms such as the ASEAN 3, the East Asia Summit, the ASEAN Regional Forum and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting.

At the end of 2015, the ASEAN Community was formed with a population of 640 million, aiming to raise the group’s GDP to 2.5 trillion USD in 2025.

Suh Choo Suk noted that three orientations for ASEAN-RoK future cooperation are to ensure sustainable prosperity, increase bilateral exchanges, and maintain a peaceful and secured Northeast Asian region.

Speaking at the meeting, Deputy Defence Minister Nguyen Chi Vinh lauded the RoK’s first-time organisation of the dialogue between ASEAN and RoK deputy defence ministers.

The dialogue creates a new communication channel for both sides to strengthen their cooperation toward practical outcomes, he added.

The official stated Vietnam supports the initiative and is willing to join hands to make it a success.

On the sideline of the Seoul Defence Dialogue 2017, Vinh met with his Canadian counterpart Jody Thomas on September 7.

Vietnam always thinks of Canada as an Asia-Pacific nation and values defence ties with Canada, he said, adding that the ties, however, is yet to meet its full potential.

He asked the Canadian side to boost collaboration with Vietnam, particularly in training Vietnamese officers in English and French to prepare them for UN peacekeeping missions.

Vinh invited Canadian officers to learn the Vietnamese language at universities in Vietnam and study military arts at the National Defence Academy of Vietnam.

He said Vietnam welcomes Canadian naval ships to visit the country for joint search-and-rescue drills and hopes to boost cooperation with Canada concerning air force, cyberspace and alleviation of war consequences.

For her part, Jody Thomas said Canada is committed to promoting peace and security in Asia-Pacific.

Canada will increase its engagements with Vietnam in marine police cooperation, anti-terrorism and humanitarian aid.-VNA