ASEAN ministers pledge further cooperation on defense, security

ASEAN ministers pledge further cooperation on defense, security
# 28 August 2013 19:26 (UTC +04:00)

Baku‑APA. ASEAN defense ministers and senior defense officials pledged to further strengthen cooperation to address defense and security challenges in the region at the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting(ADMM) Retreat here on Wednesday, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

Ministers participating the Retreat reiterated their commitment to address defense and security challenges collectively through cooperation within the ADMM and the ASEAN defense Ministers' Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus) mechanisms, according to a statement released after the meeting.

Ministers stressed the importance of defense cooperation in building an ASEAN Political-Security Community by 2015 and beyond, and discussed how to further develop and enhance the ADMM and ADMM- Plus process.

While stressing on the importance of ASEAN centrality in driving the ADMM process, they suggested new areas to be explored such as cyber security, and looked into the synergy between defense and security cooperation, said the statement.

Ministers have also agreed to continue working on addressing non-traditional security challenges such as in the areas of humanitarian assistance, disaster relief (HADR) and maritime security.

Practical measures should be taken to enhance confidence building, such as open lines of communications, to reduce miscalculations and misunderstanding, particularly with regard to incidents at sea, the statement said.

The ADMM Retreat was held a day prior to the second ADMM-Plus, which is set to be staged in Brunei Darussalam on Thursday, participated by defense ministers and officials from the ten ASEAN members, as well as Australia, China, Japan, India, South Korea, New Zealand, Russia and the United States.

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