The Vietnamese general led a high-ranking Vietnamese military delegation to accompany Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh who was on his working trip to the U.S. to attend the ASEAN - U.S. Special Summit.

Sr. Lt. Gen. Pham Hoai Nam (left) and General Birame Diop

On May 16, at the U.N. Headquarters, Sr. Lt. Gen. Pham Hoai Nam worked with General Birame Diop, military adviser and assistant secretary-general.

At the meeting, the Vietnamese general thanked the U.N. for choosing and supporting Vietnam in deploying the Level-2 Field Hospital Rotation 4 and the Engineering Company Rotation 1 to the U.N. peacekeeping missions in South Sudan (UNMISS) and Abyei (UNISFA). He hoped that the U.N. will continue backing Vietnam to deploy its military medical and engineering forces to suitable U.N. peacekeeping missions as well as to run for high positions at U.N. missions and headquarters.

Gen. Nam suggested the U.N. expands cooperation in other fields with priority given to war legacy settlement, and humanitarian assistance and disaster consequence relief.

He also confirmed that Vietnam is willing to be a bridge to bolster the relations between ASEAN and the U.N.

For his part, General Birame Diop highly appreciated Vietnam’s active and responsible participation in U.N. peacekeeping operations. He highlighted the high capabilities and professionalism of Vietnamese officers taking on U.N. duties, saying that they meet all U.N. criteria.

The U.N. official acknowledged and voiced his support for Vietnam’s proposals. He expressed his belief that Vietnamese peacekeepers will continue to well fulfill all assigned missions.

Sr. Lt. Gen. Pham Hoai Nam (right) and Dr. Ely Ratner

Earlier, on May 12, at the Pentagon, Deputy Defense Minister Sr. Lt. Gen. Pham Hoai Nam had a working session with Dr. Ely Ratner, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Security Affairs.

Dr. Ely Ratner affirmed U.S. policy of supporting a strong, independent and prosperous Vietnam, and respecting Vietnam's political institutions. He said the U.S. wishes to promote cooperation with Vietnam in all fields, including defense.

At the meeting, the two sides spoke highly of the outcomes of the bilateral defense cooperation over the past time despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and in accordance with documents and agreements signed and contents reached by the leaders of the two countries.

The two officials discussed and gave orientations for the cooperation in the coming time, focusing on war legacy settlement in Vietnam, peacekeeping operations, military medicine, humanitarian assistance and disaster consequence relief, and maritime security, among others.

In terms of war legacy settlement, Dr. Ely Ratner informed that the U.S. Department of Defense will give more financial support, via the U.S. Agency of International Development, to the dioxin remediation project at Bien Hoa airbase, and provide information to serve the search and repatriation of remains of Vietnamese troops missing in action in the war in Vietnam.

For his part, Gen. Nam praised the U.S. side for coordinating to deal with war legacy, giving support to the COVID-19 control efforts over the past time, and considered this a foundation to promote the cooperative ties in the time ahead.

The Vietnamese general took this chance to invite the U.S. Department of Defense to take part in Vietnam Defense 2022 slated for late this year, during which the two countries’ defense agencies and enterprises could exchange experience, learn about demands and seek cooperation opportunities.

Reported by Ho Quang Phuong from New York, the U.S.

Translated by Mai Huong