ASEAN : TERRORISM MOST SERIOUS SECURITY THREAT TO REGION

SINGAPORE, The ASEAN Defence Ministers yesterday unanimously identified terrorism as the most serious security threat to the region.

They agreed to step up counter-terrorism cooperation in the areas of ‘Resilience, Response, Recovery’ to prevent terrorist attacks, coordinate ASEAN’s responses to address ongoing threats and recover from any terrorist attack that occurred.

In a statement issued after the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) Retreat yesteday, the Singapore Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said the Ministers also commended the strong collaboration against terrorism with the Plus countries under the ambit of the ADMM-Plus.

In line with this, the Ministers jointly issued a Statement on Countering Terrorism in ASEAN, it said.

The ADMM Retreat was chaired by Singapore Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen.

Malaysia’s Defence Minister Hishammuddin Tun Hussien attended the Retreat.

According to Mindef, the Ministers also discussed the ADMM and ADMM-Plus’ role in the regional security architecture.

The Ministers expressed strong support for the ADMM’s areas for 2018, summarised by ‘three Cs’.

Firstly, enhance counter-terrorism cooperation; secondly, improve ASEAN’s collective capability to respond to chemical, biological, and radiological threats from terrorist groups and rogue states; and thirdly, reaffirm the importance of code of unplanned encounters at sea and in the air, said Mindef.

The ASEAN Defence Ministers also had an informal meeting with the Chinese Minister of National Defence, General Chang Wanquan, where the Ministers welcomed stronger relations between ASEAN and China.

In particular, the Ministers discussed ways to improve practical cooperation, and welcomed the conduct of an inaugural ASEAN-China Maritime Exercise at the end of this year, said Mindef.

As part of the ADMM Retreat programme, the ASEAN Defence Ministers also called on Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and were hosted to a luncheon by Lee at the Changi Exhibition Centre, where the Singapore Airshow 2018 is held.

During the call, Lee and the ASEAN Defence Ministers discussed regional security issues and the ADMM agenda for the year ahead.

Singapore currently holds the ASEAN Chairmanship.

Source: NAM News Network

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