KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has called on the region’s defence ministers to continue promoting dialogue to achieve the common goal of regional peace and stability.
In making the call, Malaysian Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein noted that it was their collective task to work hand-in hand to prevent any unwanted incidents from occurring in Southeast Asia.
“As ministers of defence, the responsibility rests on our shoulders to ensure the stability of our respective countries and our people, and more importantly that of the region as a whole,” he said in his opening remarks at
the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) Retreat and 3rd ADMM-Plus which kicked off in Subang near here today.
He admitted that this was no easy task, especially given today’s inter-connected and punishingly complex security and political landscapes.
Hishammuddin expressed appreciation to his counterparts for issuing the firm call to denounce terrorism and extremist organisations and activities during the 9th ADMM meeting in Langkawi in March this year.
Hishammuddin said their united stance as well as strong condemnation against militant group IS and similar organisations demonstrated the gravity and urgency of this problem.
“It sends a clear signal that we take the issue of terrorism seriously and will do whatever it takes to counter these threats-together, as one resolute front,” he added.
ADMM is the highest defence consultative and cooperative mechanism in ASEAN on matters related to defence.
It is aimed at promoting mutual trust and confidence through greater understanding of defence and security challenges, as well as enhancement of transparency and openness.
ASEAN groups 10 countries, namely Malaysia, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam while its eight dialogue partners in the ASEAN Plus are Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Russia and the United States.
ADMM Plus meeting will be on “ASEAN – Maintaining Regional Security and Stability For and By the People”.