World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


General Dempsey Favors Building Vietnamese Naval

General Dempsey Favors Building Vietnamese Naval Capabilities

By Jim Garamone | DOD News | 18 August 2014

This article originally appeared on the Defense Department website on August 16.

Washington — If the United States lifts the embargo against the sale of lethal weapons to Vietnam, U.S. Army General Martin E. Dempsey would recommend providing materials for the Vietnam People’s Navy, he said during a news conference in Ho Chi Minh City on August 16.

In the first trip by a chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Vietnam since 1971, Dempsey visited Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City.

Forty-five years ago, the United States was in a conflict with North Vietnam, and Dempsey was a cadet at West Point preparing to join that war. “The challenge now is to think 45 years ahead,” the highest-ranking U.S. military official said.

By 2050, there will be 9 billion people on Earth — 7 billion of whom will live in the Indo-Pacific. “Where the people are is where the issues are,” the chairman said.

Vietnamese reporters questioned Dempsey on China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea. “We’ve been very clear that we don’t take sides in the territorial disputes, but we do care very much how they are resolved,” he said. “They should not be resolved through use of force.”

The United States has longstanding defense agreements with nations in the region — Thailand and the Philippines are treaty allies. “We are interested in becoming a partner with a strong and independent and prosperous Vietnam,” the chairman said.

Still, at its core the solution to the South China Sea issue hinges more on stronger multinational response brokered through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations rather than a question of “What does the United States intend to do about it?” he said.

The United States and Vietnam have common interests. “We’re encouraging many of our ASEAN partners and friends to take a multinational approach to maritime security and maritime domain awareness,” he said.

Building capabilities for maritime domain awareness is important to any effort in the region, Dempsey said, including patrol boats, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets, and search and rescue equipment.

“Our advice is that we look at this regionally, not country-by-country,” the chairman said. “We’re working our way forward in that spirit.”

There is a growing sense among U.S. elected officials and nongovernmental organizations that Vietnam has made progress on the human rights issues that initially led to the embargo being put in place more than three decades ago.

“I think in the near term there will be a discussion on how to lift it,” Dempsey said. “My military advice … will be if it is lifted that we begin with assets that would make the People’s Navy more capable in the maritime domain. That would generate a conversation on what that means, but I think the maritime domain is the place of our greatest common security interest right now.”

This could include intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance assets and even some weapons they don’t yet have for their fleet, the chairman said.

Vietnam is uniquely and importantly positioned as the 13th largest economy in the world, he said. While it is located in Southeast Asia, the nation is the springboard into the Indo-Pacific region.

“I do see Vietnam occupying a key geostrategic region,” Dempsey said. “In terms of managing its maritime resources and managing the territorial disputes — I’d suggest as goes Vietnam, I think as goes the South China Sea.”

Read more: http://iipdigital.usembassy.gov/st/english/article/2014/08/20140818305922.html?CP.rss=true#ixzz3An2u3DiE

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

As Health Needs Rise In Somalia, Funding Hits New Low

As health needs rise in Somalia, funding hits new low, cutting off 1.5 million from care – UN More>>

Need To End Violence Against Children In Conflict

‘We should be outraged’ more not being done to end violence against children in conflict – UNICEF chief More>>

On Mandela Day, UN Joins Call To Promote Community Service

Nelson Mandela, then Deputy President of the African National Congress of South Africa, raises his fist in the air while addressing the Special Committee Against Apartheid in the General Assembly Hall. UN Photo/P. Sudhakaran More>>

Some $3.2 Billion Needed For Ebola Recovery Efforts

Some $3.2 billion needed for Ebola recovery efforts in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – UN More>>

World Day: UN Spotlights Plight Of Vulnerable Populalations

Syrian refugees fleeing the fighting near the Syrian city of Kobani wait in a holding area before boarding buses in Turkey (September 2014). Photo: UNHCR /I. Prickett More>>

Afghanisatan: Direct Talks Between Government And Taliban

The United Nations Security Council has welcomed the recently held direct talks between Afghan Government and Taliban representatives as a step towards “peace and reconciliation” in the region. More>>

Eradicating World Hunger By 2030

Agriculture workers collect carrots on a farm in Chimaltenango, Guatemala. Photo: World Bank/Maria Fleischmann More>>

Bangladesh: Flood Leads To UN Agency Providing Food Relief

Anwar Hossain unloads cartons of High Energy Biscuits from a pickup truck and transfers them to a distribution center in Kawar Khop union, Ramu upazila, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo: WFP/Kamrul Mithon More>>

Ban Says World Must Act Now To Curb Climate Change

Alarmed by melting glacier in Norway, Ban says world must 'act now' to curb climate change More>>

UN Spotlights Data And Technology As Key To Sustainability

The importance of quality data and cutting edge information communication technologies (ICTs) is increasingly critical to the shaping of the future sustainable development agenda, the head of the United Nations Development Programme ( UNDP ) confirmed today. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news