The seminar was held in both online and offline forms with the participation of representatives from ASEAN member countries, the ASEAN Secretariat, and the ASEAN military attachés in Vietnam.

Major General Vu Thanh Van (center) speaking at the event

This event was to materialize Vietnam’s initiative to fly the ASEAN flag next to the national flag of ASEAN member states at the military units participating in U.N. peacekeeping operations. This initiative was approved at the 14th ADMM held in December 2020.

Speaking at the event, Major General Vu Thanh Van, Director of the Department of Foreign Relations and head of the Vietnamese delegation, thanked ASEAN members for their active participation and support for Vietnam’s initiative and believed that ASEAN countries would reach consensus on contents in the guideline to ensure that the initiative would be soon actualized.

At the seminar, representatives of countries expressed their support for Vietnam's initiative and discussed and contributed many practical ideas to help perfect the document.

Heads of participating delegations in a joint photo

The guideline clearly states the objectives and principles of flying the ASEAN flag; the time and flag-placing position; the design of flagpole; and implementation process. According to the document, the flying of the ASEAN flag must comply with the guidelines on the use of the ASEAN flag, principles and guidelines on U.N. peacekeeping operations, the host country’s laws and regulations, and regulations of militaries that send troops to join peacekeeping operations.

Vietnam’s initiative aims to promote solidarity within the ASEAN community in general and among defense forces of its members in particular and affirm the cohesion, development, and consensus of the grouping in maintaining peace and stability in the world.

Once member countries reach agreement on contents of the guideline, next steps will be taken to actualize the initiative.

At the event, Senior Colonel Nguyen Nhu Canh, Deputy Director of the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations, thanked ASEAN member countries for their positive and effective comments.

An overview of the seminar

Previously, Vietnam had received many constructive comments from ASEAN member countries at the ASEAN Defense Senior Officials' Meeting Working Group (ADSOM WG) and the ASEAN Defense Senior Officials' Meeting-Plus Working Group (ADSOM-Plus WG). The Vietnamese Ministry of National Defense also received ASEAN members’ opinions via email and text.

Translated by Tran Hoai