Defence Minister Ngo Xuan Lich and his Japanese counterpart Onodera Itsunori inspect guards of honour (Photo: VNA)
Itsunori noted that Japan wants to strengthen partnership with Vietnam in an effort based on the Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy.
Minister Lich, for his part, expressed his belief that the visit will make positive contributions to enhancing the friendship and mutual understanding between the Vietnamese and Japanese people and armies, for the sake of peace and stability in the two countries as well as in the region and the world.
He said the maintenance of peace and stability, maritime and overflight freedom in line with law in the region is of significance.
On territorial disputes at sea, including the East Sea issue, both sides stressed that parties concerned need to exercise self-restraint, fully respect diplomatic and legal processes and peacefully settle disputes in line with international law, especially the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) while seriously abiding by the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea towards formulating an effective Code of Conduct in the East Sea.
They expressed support for denuclearisation by peaceful means, constructive and practical actions to fully implement resolutions by the United Nations Security Council, contributing to maintaining peace, security and stability in the region and the world.
The two ministers spoke highly of thriving Vietnam – Japan ties in diverse areas, especially between the armies. They agreed to step up cooperation under signed agreements and enhance exchanges between the army services, joint work in search and rescue, the United Nations peacekeeping mission, response to disasters and cyber security. They consented to hold the sixth deputy ministerial-level strategic dialogue in Japan.
The Vietnamese minister suggested promoting army medical cooperation, including scientific training and research, search and rescue, humanitarian assistance and maritime security.
Vietnam is willing to welcome Japan’s self-defence vessels, he said.
Minister Lich also lauded Japan’s role in multilateral mechanisms and proposing initiatives to maintain peace and stability in the region, including the Vientiane Vision.
He added that as Vietnam will take the role of rotating Chair of ASEAN in 2020, when the 10th anniversary of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting mechanism is marked, he wished that Japan would support his country in assuming the role and hosting national defence conferences and activities on the occasion.
At the talks, host and guest signed a joint Vision Statement on Vietnam – Japan Defence Relationship towards the next decade.
While in Japan, Minister Lich met Special Advisor to the Japanese PM Koya Nishikawa and received General Secretary of the Japan – Vietnam Friendship Society of Sakai city Kato Hitoshi, Director of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation Yohei Sasakawa and former Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshito Sengoku. He also visited Vietnamese Embassy in Japan.
On the occasion, the Military Hospital 108 and Military Hospital 103 signed a cooperation agreement with the Juntendo University of Japan.