16/08/2010 | 17:25:11

VN boosts naval cooperation for friendship on sea

Vietnam’s defence policy is to base itself on its own strength to protect the motherland, maintain the viewpoint of independence and self-control, advocate neither to participate in any military alliance nor to take sides with one country against another.

Deputy Defence Minister Lieutenant-general Nguyen Chi Vinh made the statement while mentioning a recent visit by a delegation of Vietnam’s inter-ministerial officials to the USS George Washington aircraft carrier, and a visit to the central city of Da Nang by US naval ship USS John McCain.

While informing about the above-said visits in an interview with the army newspaper Quan doi Nhan dan on August 14, Lieutenant-general Vinh affirmed that those activities were conducted according to practices between sovereignty nations, and showed the Party and State’s foreign policy of independence and self-control. Vietnam is willing to be friend and reliable partner with all countries, he said.

He highlighted naval ties with neighbouring countries such as China, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand, emphasising cooperation in joint patrol, establishment of hotlines and rescue activities.

Developing naval relations with China is a priority of the Vietnamese defence ministry’s external affairs, bringing practical benefits for both countries in the spirit of comprehensive strategic partnership committed by Party and State leaders of the two nations, he said.

Lieutenant-general Vinh rejected wrong information published in foreign press, such as “Vietnam and US hold joint navy manoeuvre,” “US aircraft carrier visits Vietnam” or “Vietnam enhances power balance in East Sea,” etc.

He also affirmed that those comments are groundless and misunderstand Vietnam’s defence policy.

The development of naval ties is within Vietnam’s policy to develop defence external relations with all countries in general and naval relations with these countries in particular, Vinh concluded.

Regarding to defence dialogues, he said Vietnam has accelerated and upgraded defence strategic dialogue with a number of countries such as India, the Republic of Korea, Singapore and Russia.

Vietnam will hold defence dialogues at deputy ministerial level with the US and China, he said.

The deputy defence ministerial dialogue between Vietnam and the US will take place in Hanoi on August 17 for the first time, he said, adding that it is part of an agreement reached between the two countries’ defence ministers last year.

He said he hoped public opinion and media will be interested in and cover the event exactly./.

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