Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia call for peaceful settlement of East Sea issues

Vietnam and the Philippines have agreed to speed up the implementation of existing agreements and forge stronger bilateral cooperation. The consensus was reached during a meeting between Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Perfecto Yasay on Monday on the sidelines of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Retreat in Boracay, Philippines.

They also agreed on the need to exchange information and experience and cooperate to combat crime, terrorism, high technology crimes, and drug and human trafficking, while negotiating agreements on extradition. The senior officials committed to fostering ASEAN's solidarity and central role and reiterated the significance of ensuring peace, stability, security, safety, and freedom of navigation and overflight in the East Sea and the settlement of maritime disputes based on international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. Vietnam and the Philippines will work with other ASEAN countries to implement the Declaration on Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and quicken the signing of the Code of Conduct (COC) in the East Sea.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh had similar meeting with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi. The two pledged to boost security defense cooperation and join efforts to fight terrorism in the region. Marsudi promised close cooperation with Vietnam during APEC Year 2017 hosted by Vietnam and promote ASEAN's central role, development of the three pillars of politics-security, economics, and culture, and broader cooperation.

They agreed on the importance of maintaining peace in the East Sea and insisted on peaceful resolution of East Sea disputes respecting international law and DOC toward prompt approval of COC.

Source: VOV5