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India to help enhance Vietnamese military capabilities


Indian Defence Minister AK Antony inspects the guard of honour during a ceremonial reception in Hanoi, Vietnam on Wednesday. A PTI photo

HANOI (PTI): In an effort to boost bilateral defence ties, India and Vietnam Wednesday announced a slew of measures, including joint army training in mountain and jungle warfare and cooperation in upgrading Hanoi's military capabilities, especially of its Navy.

A day after the First ASEAN Plus Eight Defence Ministers (ADMM) meeting here in which China and US too participated, Indian Defence Minister A K Antony held talks with top Vietnamese leadership during which these measures were decided.

Antony met Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Defence Minister Gen Phung Quang Thanh here, among the top Vietnamese leaders.

At the bilateral meetings, the two sides decided that India would provide support to Vietnam "to enhance and upgrade" the capabilities of this country's defence services in general and Navy in particular.

"India will help Vietnam in its capacity building for repair and maintenance of its military platforms. The armies of the two countries will also cooperate in areas like Information Technology and English Training of Vietnamese Army personnel," an Indian Defence Ministry official said here.

Both the armies would also have a joint training in mountain and jungle warfare in India next year, apart from the two sides working towards developing cooperation among defence institutes and establishing linkages for sharing experience and knowledge in military affairs.

Antony offered assistance to Vietnamese forces in UN peace-keeping operations in which India has vast experience.

The two sides also discussed global and regional security issues, particular those concerning the Asian region.

Antony told the Vietnamese leaders that their country occupied a strategic position in India's policy priorities, both bilaterally as well as under its 'Look East' policy.

Gen Thanh thanked India for its valuable contribution to making the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting a great success.

He said India occupied a special position in Hanoi's foreign policy framework and noted, "We are indeed moved by your support."

Gen Thanh welcomed more port calls by Indian naval warships to Vietnam and offered maintenance and repair facilities at Vietnamese ports for these war machines.

Antony also extended an invitation to his Vietnamese counterpart to visit India next year.

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India  Vietnam  

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