This is the first time Vietnam has organized such an online conference of an ADSOM+ WG with the participation of the ASEAN countries and eight other countries including Russia, China, the US, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Australia, New Zealand, and India.

Lieutenant General Vu Chien Thang, Director of the Department of Foreign Relations under the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defense, Head of the ADSOM+ WG Vietnam, chairs the teleconference

The conference aimed to boost defense cooperation among ASEAN countries in the framework of ASEAN Defense Minister’s Meeting Plus (ADMM+) while making preparations for the upcoming ASEAN Defense Senior Officials’ Meeting Plus (ADSOM+) which is expected to take place on July 7.

During the meeting, the participating delegates discussed a proposed agenda as well as administrative and technical work for the ADSOM+, and contents related to activities of the Experts' Working Groups of ADMM+. General Thang also talked about several programs that Vietnam will host, including a ceremony for the 10th founding anniversary of the ADMM+, the host country’s reception programs, the first Vietnam International Defense Expo 2020, and the conference “Women and UN peacekeeping operations”.

The Vietnam International Defense Expo 2020 and the celebration of the 10th founding anniversary of the ADMM+ are slated for this October under the chair of the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defense.

On this occasion, the Head of the ADSOM+ WG Vietnam also informed delegates of the successful outcome of the recent anti-COVID-19 online table-top exercise of ASEAN's military medical forces hosted by Vietnam on May 27. He affirmed that the exercise helped realize the Joint Statement of Defense Ministers at the ADMM Retreat on strengthening cooperation in COVID-19 prevention in February 2020.

In addition, General Thang expressed his hope to further promote substantive cooperation measures within the frameworks of the ADMM and ADMM+, contributing to confirming the important role of military forces in joint efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Senior Lieutenant Colonel Pham Manh Thang, Deputy Director of the Department of Foreign Relations, the conference ended successfully thanks to great efforts and high determination of participating countries in overcoming all difficulties in technology and time difference. It showed great support to Vietnam, as the 2020 ASEAN Chair.

The countries also highly appreciated Vietnam for its activeness and flexibility amid the complicated development of the COVID1-19 pandemic.

Translated by Minh Anh