Thursday, July 28, 2016

ASEAN - Russia to help ASEAN create comprehensive security architecture

Laotian Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith (sixth from left) and Laotian Foreign Minister Saleumxay Kommasith (sixth from right) stand with Southeast Asian foreign ministers (from left), an unidentified delegate from Malaysia, Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar, Vivian Balakrishnan of Singapore, Don Pramudwinai of Thailand, Pham Binh Minh of Vietnam, Thongloun Sisoulith, Saleumxay Kommasith, Perfecto Yasay Jr. of the Philippines, Brunei's Trade Minister Jock Seng Pehin Lim, Sakhonn Prak of Cambodia, Retno Marsudi of Indonesia and ASEAN secretary-general Le Luong Minh, as they pose for a group photo during the opening ceremony of the 49th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Foreign Ministers Meeting in Vientiane, Laos, on July 24. (Associated Press/Sakchai Lalit)

Russia is committed to cooperating with ASEAN in establishing a new security architecture that will cover the Asia-Pacific region, a diplomat has said.

Russian Ambassador to Indonesia Mikhail Galuzin said foreign ministers of Russia and ASEAN had discussed further cooperation in the creation of a comprehensive military alliance during the East Asian Summit (EAS) meeting, which was part of the ASEAN Ministers Meeting (AMM) in Vientiane, Laos over the weekend.

Galuzin cited the lack of a unified military alliance in the Asia-Pacific region as the reason Russia was interested in helping the grouping create an integrated defense framework.

"There is no collective, combined, comprehensive security architecture where all the Asia Pacific countries are involved, and which would ensure equal security for all Asia Pacific," Galuzin said in a press briefing in Jakarta on Wednesday.

He said the cooperation would be based on the principles that would respect the interest of all states involved and create a conducive atmosphere for complex issues throughout the region.

There have been five rounds of consultations among experts of EAS member states, Galuzin said, with the latest one held in Beijing, China, in June. Thailand would most likely host the next meeting after having expressed intention during the meeting in Laos, he added. 

Russian and ASEAN foreign ministers also discussed further cooperation in counterterrorism, Galuzin said, adding that Russia would continue the training program to improve the capacity building of ASEAN member states’ law enforcement officers.

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