U.S. Secretary of Defense to attend ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (Plus)

US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is scheduled to attend the ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting – Plus scheduled to convene in Hanoi this October. The meeting will be attended by defense ministers from member countries. The “plus” refers to the eight ASEAN dialogue partners, which include the US and China that will also attend the conference.

Vietnam and the US held their first-ever defense dialogue on Tuesday (August 17), officials announced at a press briefing following the conference.

Robert Scher, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia, said the dialogue was very candid and open. According to Scher, the substance of the meeting included increased cooperation in areas such as marine security, international peacekeeping and search and rescue.

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4th ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting The ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) is the highest defence mechanism within ASEAN. The annual ADMM facilitates the ASEAN defence ministers to discuss and exchange views on current defence and security issues and challenges faced. The ADMM also aims to promote mutual trust and confidence through greater understanding of defence and security challenges as well as enhancement of transparency and openness.

The ADMM also continues to exchange views on addressing non-traditional security challenges and discusses the need to strengthen and take more practical steps in defence cooperation in order to make further contribution to regional peace and stability. The Meeting also reiterated its commitment to increase interactions at all levels and build a strong foundation to support the establishment of the ASEAN Community as indicated in the ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC) Blueprint.