At the dialogue, Vice Admiral Hervé de Bonnaventure, Deputy Director General for International Relations and Strategy under the French Ministry of Defense, emphasized that France highly appreciates role and position of Vietnam in the region and wants to expand defense cooperation with the country for the sake of regional peace, stability, and development.

Vice Admiral Bonnaventure expressed his delight at the positive outcomes of the bilateral defense cooperation and believed that such a dialogue mechanism would contribute to further promoting the bilateral relationship in the time to come.

The host wished that Vietnam would support France to participate in regional security mechanisms and promote relations with nations in the Asia-Pacific, especially when Vietnam takes ASEAN Chair in 2020.

General Vinh stressed the importance of the first Vietnam-France Strategy and Defense Cooperation Dialogue.

Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Chi Vinh and Vice Admiral Hervé de Bonnaventure sign the minutes of the dialogue

The general held that, the dialogue at first aimed to roll out the agreements reached during the official visit to France in September 2018 by General Ngo Xuan Lich, Vietnamese Minister of National Defense. Secondly, this was the first time the two sides has organized a new cooperation mechanism on the basis of the Vietnam-France Joint Committee on Defense Cooperation mechanism with the aim of further facilitating the bilateral defense cooperation in the current context.

According to the Vietnamese Deputy Minister of National Defense, the upgrading of this dialogue mechanism has demonstrated the development of the Vietnam-France strategic partnership, contributing to promoting the bilateral defense cooperation in a more practical and effective manner. 

In addition, Vietnam supports France to take part in regional security structure, such as the ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting Plus (ADMM+) mechanism, under ASEAN’s consensus, he said, Vietnam always welcomes positive and constructive efforts of all countries worldwide, including France for peace, stability, cooperation, and development in the region.

General Vinh affirmed that Vietnam is willing to be a bridge connecting France with regional countries, particularly ASEAN member states.

During the meeting, the two sides exchanged views on issues of mutual concern. In the global and regional situations with complex developments, they underlined that countries should join hands to address common challenges, especially the non-traditional security ones. They also agreed that all disputes should be solved by peaceful means on the basis of international law.

General Vinh and Vice Admiral Bonnaventure expressed delight at the development of the bilateral defense relations in various spheres such as UN peacekeeping operations, personnel training, cyber security, information exchanges at the strategic level, and military maps.

However, these outcomes, according to them, are not on par with the two sides’ potentials and expectations. General Vinh and Vice Admiral Bonnaventure agreed to further the two countries’ defense cooperation in a more practical and effective manner.

During his visit to France, General Vinh paid a courtesy call on Ms. Geneviève Darrieussecq, Minister of State attached to Minister for the French Armed Forces. The two sides agreed to establish a Vietnam-France working group, which consists of Vietnamese and French military history experts. The group is in charge of exchanging information and keepsakes related to the war in the Indochina as well as supporting each side’s veterans and their families.

In addition, the Vietnamese delegation held talks with Admiral Bernard Rogel, Chief of Staff of the French President on several issues of mutual concern and the Vietnam-France defense cooperation relations.

Translated by Van Hieu