Prawit to meet Mattis ahead of Vietnam trip

Prawit to meet Mattis ahead of Vietnam trip

Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon will meet US Secretary of Defence James Mattis on the sidelines of the 12th Asean Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) in Singapore, a Defence Ministry spokesman said.

The US Secretary of Defence is among eight dialogue partners who will attend the ADMM-Plus meeting to discuss a wide range of military cooperation issues with their Asean counterparts.

The ADMM and ADMM-Plus meetings will kick off on Thursday, and run until Saturday.

Mattis then will make his second visit to Vietnam this year.

Spokesman Khongcheep Tantrawanich said Gen Prawit previously met Gen Mattis during a visit to the Pentagon in April.

Gen Prawit will also hold talks with counterparts from other countries, such as New Zealand Defence Minister Ron Mark, and Singapore Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen on a number of topics related to boosting military cooperation, Lt Gen Khongcheep said.

The 10 Asean ministers will discuss various measures to strengthen regional security cooperation during the ADMM meeting.

Each of them will then have separate informal meetings with the eight dialogue partners before the ADMM-Plus meeting formally takes place.

At the conclusion of the meetings, Singapore will hand over the chairmanship of the ADMM and ADMM Plus to Thailand which will assume the Asean chairmanship next year, the spokesman said.

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