Mark Collins – The US and Vietnam: Containing China Together? A Visit to Washington

Further to this post, the head of the Communist Part visits the President of the United States (amongst others).  Gosh:

1) US Lauds Future Promise of Vietnam Ties amid Historic Visit: US vice-president says there is “nothing but promise on the horizon” for bilateral ties.

Vietnamese Leader Predicts Closer US Military Ties


(Photo: Martin H. Simon-Pool/Getty Images)

One of Vietnam’s top leaders says his country will continue to open up to the international community in coming years, a shift that he claims will benefit both Vietnam and the United States.

Nguyen Phu Trong, general secretary of Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party, also told the audience at the Center for Strategic and International Studies that military and security needs of his country are “huge” and likely to lead to expanded military partnerships with the US.

“We will continue with the foreign policy of diversification and multilateralization, of mutual benefits, of non-interference, of equality,” Trong said through a translator. “Vietnam is ready and willing to be a partner, a friend and a constructive and responsible member of the international community.”

Trong’s comments came as part of a broader visit to the Washington area, highlighted by a meeting in the Oval Office with President Barack Obama, the highest level meeting between the two nations since relations stabilized 20 years ago. He also met with members of the Senate. The visit coincided with events honoring the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War…

3) US and Vietnam Should Boost Defense, Economic Ties, Says Communist Party Leader

On defense and security, Trong called on the United States and Vietnam to expand their cooperation on law enforcement, counterterrorism and maritime security. He also urged Washington to help address Vietnam’s large defense needs by deepening collaboration in the areas of oil and gas exploration and providing vessels for maritime security.

“I think the needs are huge,” he said.

Vietnam’s extensive coast line, Trong said, meant that the maritime domain was not only important in terms of safeguarding the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, but preserving its blue economy which was vital to advance its socioeconomic development.

In that vein, he said Vietnam appreciated the United States’ active role in and support for Vietnam in the South China Sea, which Hanoi calls the East Sea [emphasis added].

“Vietnam welcomes countries including the United States to play an active and responsible role in maintaining peace, security and stability, maritime security, freedom of navigation and overflight and promoting development cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region,” he said…

Take that, Dragon!  And this, from the two countries’ joint statement:

Both countries are concerned about recent developments in the South China Sea that have increased tensions, eroded trust, and threatened to undermine peace, security, and stability. They recognize the imperative of upholding the internationally-recognized freedoms of navigation and overflight; unimpeded lawful commerce, maritime security and safety; refraining from actions that raise tensions; ensuring that all actions and activities takencomply with international law; and rejecting coercion, intimidation, and the use or threat of force. Both countries support the peaceful resolution of disputes in conformity with international law, including as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982 (UNCLOS), and recognize the importance of fully implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea in its entirety, as well as efforts to conclude the Code of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea…

Via   at twitter.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds

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