Vietnam contributed positively to the 9th ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM-9) by making a number of proposals towards building an ASEAN Political-Security Community, stated Defence Minister General Phung Quang Thanh.

Speaking to the Vietnam News Agency correspondent in Malaysia on the major outcomes of the freshly concluded event, General Thanh said Vietnam highlighted the importance of honesty and responsibility among member countries in ensuring and maintaining peace, stability, security and safety in the region.

They should consider the security of the ASEAN Community their own national security, he said.

Vietnam also stressed the need to continue strengthening the ASEAN’s common stance on the restraint of using force and settling disputes through peaceful measures in conformity with the United Nations Charter and international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982).

The country also emphasised the importance of fully implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), as well as support for negotiators in reaching a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

At the same time, Vietnam suggested strengthening the ADMM’s role through providing comprehensive security, ultimately enhancing the efficiency of ADMM activities, he said.

ASEAN should prioritise fostering bilateral defence cooperation among member countries and with other partners, said the minister.

At the event, Vietnam proposed that the improvement of bilateral defence among members of the bloc should be increased through implementing trust-building measures, and strengthening consultations, sharing information, and facilitating high-level meetings and joint activities among armies.

On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the ADMM, Vietnam suggested a review of ADMM operations and orientations for the next decade.

Other Vietnamese proposals included forming a mechanism to respond promptly to non-traditional security challenges threatening the safety and development of the community, said General Thanh.

During the ADMM-9, the ministers reached consensus on awareness of non-traditional security challenges in the sea and on land, as well as Islamic terrorist organisations threatening the common development of the region, revealed the minister.

They agreed to foster partnership among ASEAN members and other partners in maintaining peace, stability, maritime and aviation security and safety.

The ministers also concurred to increase coordination in search and rescue, mine clearance, anti-piracy and combating human and drug trafficking.

Regarding the East Sea, defence leaders underscored the need to fully observe the UN Charter and international law, especially the UNCLOS 1982 and the DOC, while exerting diplomatic efforts towards a COC between ASEAN and China.

The ADMM-9, which took place in Malaysia from March 16, was a significant step towards the formation of the ASEAN Community in 2015, with Political-Security Community as a key pillar.-VNA