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Inaugural ASEAN-Plus Defence Ministers’ Meeting

15 October 2010 213 No Comment

To advance Australia’s defence engagement in and with the Asia-Pacific, I will visit Hanoi from Monday 11 to Wednesday 13 October to attend the inaugural ASEAN-Plus Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM+).

The ADMM+ brings together Defence Ministers from the 10 ASEAN nations plus Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Russia, and the United States. After this year’s first meeting, it will meet every third year at Ministerial level. Officials will meet in the intervening years.

The ADMM+ builds on the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting, which was established in 2006 by the 10 ASEAN countries. ASEAN Defence Ministers hold their fifth annual meeting immediately before the ADMM+.

By involving all members of the East Asia Summit, together with the United States and Russia, the ADMM+ will strengthen and deepen trust and cooperation on defence and security matters throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

During the inaugural meeting, Defence Ministers will discuss the establishment of a framework for regional cooperation on issues including counter-terrorism, humanitarian and disaster relief, maritime security, and peacekeeping.

Australia welcomes the establishment of the ADMM+, which further strengthens our region’s defence and security cooperation architecture. Australia has been a reliable partner of ASEAN for over 30 years, and an active participant in ASEAN-related meetings, including the ASEAN Regional Forum and the East Asia Summit. Australia has supported the proposed greater engagement of the United States in the East Asia Summit.

In addition to participating in ADMM+, I will hold bilateral meetings with counterparts from the region, including US Secretary of Defense Gates, Japanese Defence Minister Kitazawa, and Chinese Defence Minister Liang.

I will also sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Defence Cooperation with the Meeting’s host, Vietnamese Defence Minister General Thanh, reflecting the growing bilateral defence cooperation between Australia and Vietnam.

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