Malaysia’s position for multilateral dialogues between ASEAN and friendly regional and superpower taking precedence over any attempts of projection of power and/or force in the region not with standing the complexity of the multiple claims dispute within the South China Sea, is the flavour of inaugural Putrajaya Forum.
Najib Highlights Critical Role Of ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting Plus
KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 (Bernama) — The ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) Plus plays a critical role in balancing major power influence in the ASEAN region, allowing practical military cooperation to take place involving the middle and super powers of the world, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The Prime Minister said this is very important as ASEAN, on its own, cannot guarantee peace in the region without support from friends and partners.
He said the ADMM Plus addressed regional defence and security challenges, including maritime security, counter terrorism, peace-keeping operations, humanitarian disaster and relief, military medicine, humanitarian mine actions and, soon, cyber security.
“These mechanisms will help guide us in the decades to come, long after ASEAN turns 50 next year,” he said when opening the 2016 Putrajaya Forum, held in conjunction with the Defence Services Asia Exhibition and Conference 2016 here today.
The ADMM is the highest defence consultative and cooperative mechanism in ASEAN which aims to promote mutual trust and confidence through greater understanding of defence and security challenges as well as enhancement of transparency and openness.
The ADMM Plus is a platform for ASEAN and its eight dialogue partners to strengthen security and defence cooperation for peace, stability, and development in the region.
ASEAN’s eight dialogue partners in the ADMM-Plus are Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Russia and the United States.
On new security threats, Najib said there were cyber terrorists who could operate with ease across any firewall that individual countries put up as well as extremists who do not accept the legitimacy of states and could radicalise from afar.
“Stepping up inter-agency cooperation is vital. Any rivalries and squabbling over jurisdiction and turfs must belong to the past.
“There is too much at stake. In this challenging time of economic uncertainty, governments are forced to optimise the use of resources,” he said.
Najib said Malaysia had adopted the National Blue Ocean Strategy which encourages inter-agency cooperation and collaboration.
The NBOS is the cooperation between the armed forces and the Royal Malaysia Police, he said.
He said that to meet the demands of defence and security challenges these days, a more comprehensive approach underscored by a spirit of openness and inclusiveness was needed.
“We must embrace the fact that defence and security are not the business of the government alone, but of all stakeholders who have common interests and goals,” he said.
Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak reminded ASEAN and China, signatories the Document of Conduct in 2002 which agreed that dialogue based on the United Nations Convention Laws of the Seas (UNCLOS) shall take priority role to resolve issues.
In his keynote address at Putrajaya Forum 2016 Prime Minister Najib stated the importance of continuous multilateral non military engagement is way forward and ASEAN Defence Minister Meeting Plus is one of the ideal forum to achieve and maintain continuous peace and harmony.
It is an apt message amidst growing military manoeuvres which include superpower in the likes of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) – Navy and US Naby around the region. Particularly, in the disputed areas of South China Sea and building up tension in China’s unsubstantiated claims of the imaginary ‘Nine-Dash-Line’.
ASEAN is a very important global economic region and consumer market, amidst the encouraging regional growth and global trade prominence. This is not withstanding South China Sea is the second globally most strategic and important maritime passage.
This is further echoed by Deputy Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi as Putrajaya Forum 2016 was officially closed on Tuesday.
Maintaining peace, security and stability in Asean now a more complex task: Zahid
BY ALIZA SHAH – 19 APRIL 2016 @ 6:40 PM
KUALA LUMPUR: Territorial disputes in the South China Sea and the intercession of external interests make efforts to maintain Asean’s peace, security and stability even more complex.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the importance of the maritime realm of Southeast Asia that hosts strategic and vital sea lines communication would continue to attract the attention and interest of major powers.
“The geopolitics of the region is also changing rapidly with the competing interest of major powers contesting for supremacy in this part of the world.
“The importance of the maritime realm of Southeast Asia that host strategic and vital sea lines of communication, the Straits of Malacca and the South China Sea, will continue to attract attention and interest,” he said at the closing of the Putrajaya Forum 2016. Zahid said conflicts related to the territorial disputes and the intercession of external interest would require more than diplomatic efforts by all nations involved.
“Sincere efforts to diffuse tensions may now require a multitude of engagements as well as deft negotiation processes by the leaders of all nations involved.
“Malaysia has always advocated the importance of multilateralism and regional cooperation in particular, Asean, as well as the networks of diplomatic relationships which spans across the globe to collectively address emerging security challenges,” he said.
Continuous dialogues within ASEAN and at ADMM Plus forum simply translate the all the nations and stakeholders develop their friendly position and maintain diplomatic channels above other options, even the itch to flex muscle by projection of force.