In his speech, General Phan Van Giang stated that the theme of the 9th ADMM-Plus reflects the common wish of ASEAN members and partners on establishing and maintaining peace, security and stability in the region and the world. This is an important establishment for all countries to recover socio-economy and overcome post-pandemic consequences.

Minister of National Defense General Phan Van Giang at the 9th ADMM-Plus

Sharing the same viewpoints with the head delegates on regional and global security situations, Minister Phan Van Giang held that the world is witnessing rapid and unpredictable developments in geopolitical and strategic environment. More efforts have been put in developing regional and international cooperation; however, conflicts, competition, and stressful confrontation still remain, he noted. While non-traditional security threats like pandemics, climate change, water security, and cyber security are emerging clearly, traditional security threats are still complicated.

According to the Vietnamese defense minister, the maritime security issues are drawing attention of many countries, including the maritime security in the East Sea (South China Sea). The maintenance of a peaceful, stable, and safe security environment and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea is the common concern and interest of ASEAN countries and their partners.

General Phan Van Giang stressed that Vietnam consistently settles all disputes in the East Sea by peaceful means in line with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982, complies with the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and steps up the completion of an effective and substantive Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

According to the minister, upholding the role of ASEAN-led mechanisms, including the ADMM-Plus, is an important issue. Since its establishment, the ADMM-Plus has always brought into full play the ASEAN's central role, promoted dialogues and cooperation among intra-ASEAN countries as well as between them and external partners for regional peace and stability. As a member of ASEAN, Vietnam is committed to taking responsibility together with other member countries to contribute more actively to the common development of the  association, as well as ADMM and ADMM-Plus in particular, he stated.

The 9th ADMM-Plus adopted a joint declaration on “Defense Cooperation to Strengthen Solidarity for a Harmonized Security.” The declaration reaffirmed the importance of maintaining and fostering peace, security, stability, prosperity, safety, and freedom of navigation and aviation as well as the need of improving mutual trust and self-restraint in conducting activities; avoiding actions that may further complicate the situation, and pursue the settlement of disputes by peaceful and non-coercive means in accordance with international law, including the UNCLOS 1982. The joint declaration also stressed on the maintenance of measures to build practical trust and heighten spirits of solidarity and cooperation among intra-ASEAN countries as well as between them and external partners, contributing to fostering peace, stability, prosperity and self-reliance ahead of emerging security issues in the region.

The same day, the handover ceremony of the ADMM and ADMM-Plus Chairmanship took place solemnly in Siem Reap, Cambodia. The Indonesian defense ministry officially became the Chair of ADMM and ADMM-Plus in 2023.

Reported by Thu Trang from Cambodia

Translated by Trung Thanh