Deputy Defence Minister Sen. Lieut. Gen. Do Ba Ty – the Vietnam People’s Army Chief of General Staff – recently has led a delegation to the US at the invitation of US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Army General Martin Dempsey.
Ty has talked with the medial about the visit.
Reporter: Can you tell us about the visit’s aim and its meaning?
Mr Ty: Vietnam-US relations have progressed in recent years, including in national defence.
The visit is a good chance to promote friendship and mutual understanding between the two countries’ armies, pushing defence cooperation to a height that matches the success of bilateral friendship and cooperation.
It affirms Party and State foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, multilateralisation, and diversification of external relations, aiming to raise the country’s and army’s prestige on the world stage and help international friends better their understanding of Vietnamese land, people, and military.
Reporter: What results did the two sides achieve during the visit?
Mr Ty: General Martin Dempsey and I had a frank, open, and constructive discussion on issues of mutual concern. We reviewed the results of recent cooperation and talked about future defence cooperation in line with the principles of respect for independence, sovereignty, unification, territorial integrity, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit.
The two defence ministries gave in principle agreement to the implementation of a signed memorandum of understanding.
The two sides will continue to exchange visits, consultations, and dialogues on dealing with the consequences of war, including landmine and unexploded ordnance clearance, the search for MIAs, and removing dioxin chemical residue.
They agreed to continue search and rescue, army medicine, and humanitarian collaboration with the aim of strengthening mutual trust for future cooperative endeavours.
The US side expressed a willingness to support Vietnam and share experiences in maritime policing and the UN’s peace-keeping activities.
I also invited General Martin and his wife to visit Vietnam.
The two sides confirmed they will unite at regional and international forums wherever possible, especially at the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting plus (ADMM+) to make positive contributions to maintaining regional peace, stability, and cooperation.
The Vietnamese delegation used the visit to meet with senators and US military leaders and were introduced to some army units. Both sides were generally pleased with the landmark visit’s results.
Reporter: Can you tell us about the prospects for defence cooperation in the future?
Mr Ty: Vietnam-US relations have developed stably under the framework of a constructive partnership. High-ranking military visit exchanges demonstrate the recent success of defence cooperation. I think that if the two sides pay great attention to reinforcing strategic trust and work on disentangling their stubborn differences, the future of their bilateral defence ties is bright.
Reporter: Thank you very much.