Vietnam, Indonesia sign declaration on joint vision on defense cooperation

Indonesian and Vietnamese Defense Ministers reviewing the guards of honor

The signing of this declaration aims to boost bilateral defense ties between Vietnam and Indonesia, promote mutual concerns on security based on joint commitments to peace, stability, cooperation, development, international law and regulations of each country.

Accordingly, the two sides will foster the bilateral partnership in national defense, maintain regional security and stability, protect international principles and law, and cooperate in settling non-traditional security threats and related risks.

The declaration also specifies contents in the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on enhancing cooperation between defense officials and related activities, signed in October 2010. The declaration also maps out directions for expanding and enhancing the Vietnam-Indonesia strategic partnership.

Before the talks, the host held a solemn welcoming ceremony at the headquarters of the Indonesian Defense Ministry for the high-ranking Vietnamese military delegation, led by General Ngo Xuan Lich, Politburo member, Deputy Secretary of the Central Military Commission and Defense Minister, who have been on an official visit to Indonesia since October 13.

During the talks

During the talks, Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu hailed the visit of the Vietnamese delegation, considering it an important contribution to reinforcing the traditional ties between the two armies and peoples, promoting the two countries’ strategic partnership in an effective and practical manner.

He held that as a neighboring country at sea and also a member of the ASEAN Community, Indonesia would like to further develop its friendship with Vietnam.

On behalf of the Vietnamese delegation, General Lich thanked the host for the warm and friendly reception.

The Vietnamese Defense Minister emphasized the two nations’ fruitful time-honored friendship and mutual trust in politics, stressing that Vietnam has always attached much importance to and wanted to deepen the flourishing ties between the two armies and countries, for the benefit of each country’s people and for peace, stability, cooperation and joint development of the ASEAN Community, of the region and the world as a whole.

Vietnam has always highly valued Indonesia’s status and role in the region, especially its role in ASEAN, General Lich said.

He added that the Party and the State of Vietnam paid due attention to this official visit to Indonesia of the high-ranking Vietnamese military delegation, which aims to implement the outcomes of the visit to Indonesia by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong in August 2017 and to discuss expansion of the bilateral defense ties.

Vietnamese Defense Minister General Ngo Xuan Lich (L) and his Indonesian counterpart Ryamizard Ryacudu

Also at the talks, the two sides exchanged issues of common concerns and agreed that the defense ties between the two countries have further developed and reaped practical results in accordance with the MoU on enhancing cooperation between defense officials and related activities, which was signed in October 2010. Positive outcomes are manifested in delegation exchanges, cooperation between navies, air force services, and coast guard forces and in training.

The two sides unanimously agreed to continue to fully and effectively implement the MoU’s contents with a focus on exchange of delegations at all levels, establishment of a defense policy dialogue mechanism, enhancement of cooperation between the two navies, air forces and coast guards, training and on the enhancing and strengthening of defense industry-related cooperation.

They also reached consensus on continuing to actively consult, coordinate and support each other in multilateral forums and on issues of mutual concern.

Regarding fishermen-related issues, General Lich held that if timely solutions to this could not be arrived at, it could badly impact the two countries’ ties.

General Lich affirmed that the Vietnamese side has been promoting information dissemination and education on the issue among fishermen and suggested that until the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) is demarcated, law enforcement forces of the two countries should exchange information, properly address contingencies so as to avoid unforeseen and regrettable incidents.

For his part, Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu underscored that the Indonesian Ministry of Defense will actively cooperate with relevant Indonesian ministries and agencies to deal with the issue in order to uphold its fruitful ties with Vietnam.

At the meeting with Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Dr. H. Wiranto

Earlier, on October 12, General Lich met with Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Political, Security and Legal Affairs Dr. H. Wiranto, during which he said that there remains much room for the bilateral defense ties and expressed his hope that in his position and with his prestige, the Indonesian Minister would continue supporting the two countries’ defense cooperation to make it a pillar of the strategic partnership.

General Lich believed that with the two sides’ all-out efforts, the bilateral defense ties would further develop in an intensive, effective and practical manner.

At the meeting, General Lich also talked about the fishermen-related issue and voiced Vietnam’s standpoints on the field.

For his part, Minister Wiranto highly appreciated General Lich’s official visit to Indonesia, saying that it would play an important role in bolstering the bilateral defense ties.

He emphasized the two countries’ long-lasting friendship, similarities and fighting for independence and noted that Indonesia and Vietnam should do their utmost to maintain ASEAN’s role.

The host also recalled the two countries’ signing of the agreement on continental shelf delimitation in overlapping waters in 2003 and the talks in August 2017 between Indonesian President Widodo and Vietnamese Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, during which they agreed to further step up negotiations on EEZ demarcation.

He hoped that the negotiations would gain positive results and affirmed that Indonesia wants to settle disputes by peaceful means and abiding by international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982).

During his official visit to Indonesia, General Lich also met with General Gatot Nurmantyo, Commander of the Indonesian National Military and had talk with the staff of the Vietnamese Embassy in Jakarta.

Reported by Thu Trang from Jakarta, Indonesia

Translated by Mai Huong

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