Vietnam highlights significance of ensuring regional peace at ARF meeting

NDO/VNA – Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh has highlighted the significance of ensuring peace including maritime security, as the shared interest of all states in and outside the region. Addressing the 24thASEAN Regional Forum in Manila, the Philippines, on August 7, the Deputy PM underscored concerns about reinforcement, construction and militarisation activities at sea. He proposed the maintenance of the existing principles on the East Sea that are stated in the documents of ASEAN and between the association and its partners, especially those related to the settlement of disputes through peaceful methods without using or threatening to use armed forces, the respect for international law, the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as diplomatic and legal processes. He called on partners and the international community to continue supporting efforts of ASEAN and China, speeding up the negotiation on the formation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea in an effective and legally binding manner. He also suggested the reinforcement and expansion of dialogue and trust-building measures, forming a common perspective as well as the capacity in implementing preventive diplomacy. At the forum, the ministers agreed on the need to promote the role of the ARF as the leading forum on dialogue and security cooperation as well as the building of trust and preventive diplomacy, contributing to ensuring peace, stability and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. They concurred to continue implementing the Hanoi Plan of…... [read more]

NDO/VNA – Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh has highlighted the significance of ensuring peace including maritime security, as the shared interest of all states in and outside the region. Addressing the 24thASEAN Regional Forum in Manila, the Philippines, on August 7, the Deputy PM underscored concerns about reinforcement, construction and militarisation activities at sea. He proposed the maintenance of the existing principles on the East Sea that are stated in the documents of ASEAN and between the association and its partners, especially those related to the settlement of disputes through peaceful methods without using or threatening to use armed forces, the respect for international law, the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as diplomatic and legal processes. He called on partners and the international community to continue supporting efforts of ASEAN and China, speeding up the negotiation on the formation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea in an effective and legally binding manner. He also suggested the reinforcement and expansion of dialogue and trust-building measures, forming a common perspective as well as the capacity in implementing preventive diplomacy. At the forum, the ministers agreed on the need to promote the role of the ARF as the leading forum on dialogue and security cooperation as well as the building of trust and preventive diplomacy, contributing to ensuring peace, stability and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. They concurred to continue implementing the Hanoi Plan of…... [read more]

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (fourth, left), Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and​ other foreign ministers pose for a photo at a meeting on August 6 (Photo: AFP/VNA) Manila (VNA) – The ASEAN and its 10 partner countries agreed several major cooperation plans at the ASEAN Post Ministerial Conference (PMC+1) sessions in Manila, the Philippines, on August 6. Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh led the Vietnamese delegation to the events, part of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM 50) and related meetings. As Vietnam is the country coordinator of the ASEAN-India dialogue partnership, Minh and India’s Minister of State for External Affairs General Vijay Kumar Singh co-chaired the ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers’ Meeting. At the PMC+1 sessions, the foreign ministers from ASEAN and the 10 partner nations reviewed relations over the past year and devised plans for future cooperation.  They focused on economy, trade, investment, connectivity, development gap narrowing, climate change, natural disaster management, people-to-people exchange and education. They also discussed regional and international issues of shared concern. The dialogue partners congratulated ASEAN on its 50th founding anniversary and hailed the bloc’s achievements after almost two years since the ASEAN Community was established. They pledged to continue supporting ASEAN to enhance economic and regional connectivity, narrow development gaps and boost free and equal trade through existing free trade agreements (FTAs) and those with bigger framework such as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). The partner…... [read more]

(L to R) North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho, Cambodia's Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn, Canada's Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, Brunei's Foreign Minister Lim Jock Seng, Bangladesh's Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, Australia's Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi link arms during the Gala Dinner of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings in Manila on August 6, 2017. Photo by AFP/Mark R.Cristino North Korea dismissed offers of talks from the South during a rare exchange between the two rivals' foreign ministers, Seoul's Yonhap news agency reported Monday after the UN imposed a new round of sanctions on nuclear-armed Pyongyang. News of the brief encounter on the sidelines of a regional forum in Manila came as the South's President Moon Jae-In urged a "peaceful resolution" to the tensions in a telephone conversation with his US counterpart Donald Trump. Even a conventional conflict on the peninsula could cost a million dead or wounded within months, estimates say. Moon told Trump the South "cannot let another war to break out" on the peninsula after the 1950-53 Korean War that sealed the division of two Koreas, the presidential Blue House said in a statement. The South's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-Wha shook hands with her Northern counterpart Ri Yong-Ho ahead of an ASEAN Regional Forum dinner on Sunday, Yonhap said. Kang urged Ri to accept Seoul's offers of military talks to lower tensions on the divided peninsula, and for discussions on…... [read more]

Established in 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand, with 5 founding members, ASEAN has grown steadily and admitted 5 more member countries. The Association became a Community on December 31, 2015. Drawing outside attention The international community has applauded ASEAN for its effective connectivity and its central role in Asia-Pacific regional structure. The formation of the ASEAN Community has enhanced ASEAN’s strategic value and attracted partners’ attention to achieve the common goal of peace, stability, and development. 86 countries have sent their ambassadors to ASEAN, 9 of 11 partners have established diplomatic missions in ASEAN, and 50 ASEAN committees have been set up in third countries. Last year, ASEAN signed an extended document paving the way for Chile, Egypt, and Morocco to join the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia, raising the Treaty’s membership to 35. The US, a major partner, respects and supports ASEAN’s central role in shaping regional structure, and is committed to continuing assistance to ASEAN Community building. The US calls ASEAN an important economic partner, continues the ASEAN-US Connect initiative, encourages sustainable and fair economic growth, and maintains training programs for ASEAN youth and women, including the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) and Fulbright Scholarships. US President Donald Trump said he will attend regional events, including the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit (APEC) in Vietnam, and the ASEAN-US and the East Asia Summit in the Philippines later this year. ASEAN mechanisms related to politics, security, and defense…... [read more]

In his opening remarks, Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said the ministers will discuss regional progresses in implementing important initiatives as well as future orientations for building the ASEAN Community, realizing the ASEAN Political-Security Community Blueprint 2025, and preparation for the 31st ASEAN Summit and related meetings in November this year. Foreign ministers posing for a photo at the opening ceremony.  They will also exchange views on regional and global issues of mutual concern such as the East Sea (South China Sea), the Korean Peninsula, anti-terrorism and extremism fight, navigation security and other non-traditional security matters. At a plenary session, the FMs will have an in-depth discussion on working groups’ meetings with 17 dialogue countries, including the US, Russia, Japan and China. Such issues as the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and settlement of territorial disputes in the East Sea, terrorism, violent extremism, and cross-border crimes are expected to be deliberated at the event. The ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights will update the FMs on the human rights situation so as to help them devise measures to promote and protect human rights in ASEAN based on the commission’s Terms of Reference and ASEAN Human Rights Declaration. The AMM 50 and related meetings will run until August 8. On August 7, foreign ministers of ASEAN and 17 dialogue partners are scheduled to meet at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) – an important multilateral security dialogue – to…... [read more]

Vietnam urged other Southeast Asian nations to take a stronger stand against Chinese expansionism in the East Sea on Saturday, as a tense regional security forum began with North Korea also under fire over its nuclear program. Ahead of the launch of the annual gathering of foreign ministers from the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Vietnam made a bold play against China with a raft of suggested changes to a planned joint communique. It set the stage for a fiery few days of diplomacy in the Philippine capital, with the top diplomats from China, the United States, Russia and North Korea to join their ASEANand other Asia-Pacific counterparts for security talks from Sunday. The meetings will take place as the United Nations Security Council votes this weekend on a U.S.-drafted resolution to toughen sanctions against North Korea to punish the isolated regime for its missile tests. The United States said it would also seek to build unified pressure on the North at the Manila event -- known as the ASEAN Regional Forum. After their own day of meetings on Saturday, ASEAN foreign ministers released a joint statement expressing "grave concerns" over the North's first two intercontinental ballistic missile tests that were conducted last month. "These developments seriously threaten peace, security and stability in the region and the world," the statement said. But on the East Sea (Vietnamese reference for the South China Sea) dispute -- one of Asia's other top powder keg issues -- there was far…... [read more]

ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh (Source: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh highlighted the bloc’s milestones during its 50 years of existence in an interview with Vietnam News Agency. Minh told reporters that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was established in 1967 with only five members, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines. The purpose at that time was to deal with security-related risks amid the Cold War and the anti-US war in Indochina. The bloc then admitted Brunei in 1984, Vietnam in 1995, Laos and Myanmar in 1997 and Cambodia in 1999. These moves completed its initial target of connecting all Southeast Asian countries which are diverse in political institution, economic structure, cultural identity, language and religion. In 2003, the bloc issued the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II identifying the objective of establishing an ASEAN Community with three pillars of politics-security, economics and culture-society, Minh said, adding that the ASEAN Charter in 2007 created a legal foundation and institution framework for strengthening regional connectivity and for establishing the ASEAN Community in 2015. The most important milestone in ASEAN’s history was the establishment of the ASEAN Community in December 2015 and the launch of the ASEAN Vision 2025 towards a self-reliant, legal-binding and people –centered community on January 1, 2016, he added. [ASEAN – a rare sub-region organisation of solidarity: Deputy PM] Mechanisms including the ASEAN Regional Forum, East Asia Summit and Asia Plus Three are…... [read more]

NDO – A Vietnamese delegation, led by Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh, arrived in Manila, in the Philippines, to attend the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting (AMM50) and related meetings from August 4-8. The related meetings include the ASEAN+1 Ministerial Meetings with ten dialogue partners, the 18th ASEAN+3 Ministerial Meeting with Northeastern Asian countries, the East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers' Meeting and the 24th ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF). In addition, the Ministerial Meeting of Mekong River downstream countries, the Ganges River Basin and Mekong River with the US, Japan and India and the celebration of 50th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN (August 8, 1967 – 2017) will take place. Vietnam’s aim is to actively participate in the process of building the ASEAN Community through its commitment to enhance the building process, as well as initiatives to strengthen the cooperation and consolidate intra-bloc solidarity and unity, as well as promoting the central role of ASEAN, particularly in ensuring peace, security and development in the region. Vietnam also wishes to contribute to fostering the practical relations among ASEAN countries and with it’s partners, as well as improving the efficiency of regional forums led by ASEAN. The country’s participation at the Meeting will help to improve its image, position and role in ASEAN, the Asia-Pacific and the world.... [read more]

Tillerson is scheduled to participate in a series of meetings involving the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Manila starting Saturday. North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho is also expected to be at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), one of few international gatherings the communist country regularly attends. "The secretary has no plans to meet the North Korean foreign minister in Manila. I don't expect to see that happen," Susan Thornton, acting assistant secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, said in a teleconference previewing his upcoming trip. The U.S. continues to exert pressure on the North Korean regime to abandon its nuclear and missile programs, she quoted Tillerson as saying during a press conference Tuesday. He also reassured Pyongyang that Washington does not seek a regime change in the reclusive state and would be willing to hold talks "at some point."    Thornton said such talks could be possible in the future if North Korea indicates a willingness to enter into serious discussions about its denuclearization. "What we would expect to see this year at the meeting would be a general chorus of condemnation of North Korea's provocative behavior and pretty serious diplomatic isolation directed at the North Korean foreign minister," she said. Meanwhile, Kyodo news agency reported Thornton said that the U.S. will call for the suspension of North Korea's membership of the ARF as part of efforts to beef up pressure on the regime bent on developing missiles and nuclear weapons. It quoted Thornton…... [read more]




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