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US Secretary of Defence pays official visit to Vietnam

Defence Minister General Ngo Xuan Lich on November 20 held talks with US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper, who is on an official visit to Vietnam from November 19 to 21.

The two sides exchanged views on issues of shared concern and stressed the importance of maintaining a peaceful and stable environment for development.

They agreed to deepen the bilateral defence ties, thus contributing to the comprehensive partnership between Vietnam and the US.

The two ministers agreed that outcomes of the defence cooperation have met the aspirations and interests of the two countries’ people, especially in the settlement of post-war consequences such as the search for missing-in-action servicemen, bomb and mine clearance, Agent Orange (AO)/dioxin remediation, United Nations peace-keeping operations, training, military medicine and the improvement of law enforcement capacity at sea, disaster relief and humanitarian aid.

The two sides will step up cooperation in accordance with the contents of the memorandum of understanding on promoting defence collaboration signed in 2011, the joint vision statement on defence cooperation inked in 2015 and the cooperation plan for 2018-2020, focusing on high-ranking delegation exchange, consultation and dialogue mechanisms and joint work to address post-war consequences.

In the immediate future, they will join hands in implementing the project on dioxin remediation at Bien Hoa airport, search and rescue, disaster relief and humanitarian aid, maritime security, military medicine, and English language training. The two sides will also research the demand for cooperation in defence industry, and UN peace-keeping operations.

The US Defence Secretary’s visit to Vietnam, from November 19-21, aims to realise cooperation agreements in national defence between the two countries, contributing to enhancing the friendship and mutual understanding between their armies and people./