Vietnam and Indonesia have agreed to further boost defence and security cooperation during their defence ministers’ talks in Jakarta, Indonesia, on May 18.

Vietnamese Defence Minister Phung Quang Thanh and his Indonesian counterpart Purnomo Yusgiantoro agreed to soon implement the memorandum understanding on defence cooperation signed in October 2010.

General Thanh, who paid an official visit to Indonesia, where he also attended the fifth ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM-5), stressed that naval cooperation would lead the two countries’ defence cooperation and invited Indonesian naval experts to visit Vietnam to discuss the launch of joint patrols and set up a liaison channel between the two navies.

He expressed his hope that naval forces of the two countries would sign an agreement on the field this year.

Purnomo Yusgiantoro agreed with Thanh’s view points and affirmed that Indonesia would set up a working group in charge and send the Deputy Naval Commander to work with the Vietnamese Navy on the issue.

On cooperation at multilateral forums, General Thanh affirmed that Vietnam has always supported Indonesia as the ASEAN Chair, saying Indonesia ’s successes are of the whole bloc, including Vietnam .

On the border dispute between Cambodia and Thailand , the two sides shared the same view that it was unfortunate for the process of building the ASEAN Political and Security Community affecting the bloc’s internal connectivity and solidarity.

General Thanh said also a member of ASEAN, Vietnam has hailed the two countries’ ceasefire agreement.

He expressed his wish that no conflict recurrence would take place and the two countries would continue implementing the commitments reached at the informal meeting of ASEAN Foreign Ministers in Jakarta on Feb. 22, 2011.

Vietnam has supported ASEAN in playing its role in assisting Cambodia and Thailand to settle those disputes peacefully and backed Indonesia in the role as the ASEAN Chair to proceed efforts and assistance on the basis of abiding by fundamental principles of the ASEAN Charter, especially consultation and consensus, General Thanh said.

Vietnam wished that Indonesia , as the ASEAN Chair, would soon send observers to help solve border disputes between Cambodia and Thailand and continue to contribute actively to the process, Thanh added.

The Indonesian Minister said Indonesia is willing to send observers to the disputed area when gaining an agreement from Cambodia and Thailand . He agreed that ASEAN problems must be solved on the grounds of ASEAN’s principles and on the basis of the ASEAN Charter.

Regarding the East Sea issue, General Thanh said that despite disputes over sovereignty in coastal areas and in the waters, all concerned countries share a common aspiration of maintaining peace and stability for cooperation and mutual development.

He reiterated Vietnam ’s viewpoint, “Disputes must be handled by peaceful measures and based on international laws, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. ASEAN member countries and China need to fully observe the Declaration on Conducts of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), which was signed by ASEAN and China in Cambodia in 2002. ASEAN and China should move to compile the Code of Conducts in the East Sea (COC).”

Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro stated that Indonesia wishes that the East Sea would be stable with security and maritime freedom ensured.

He said his country included the issue on the draft joint declaration of ADMM-5 and expected the concerned parties would have their COC in the future.
The same day, Vietnamese military officers paid a courtesy visit to the Indonesian Vice President./.