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Vietnam Today

Vietnam & EU step up security and defense cooperation

Released at: 11:55, 18/10/2019

Vietnam & EU step up security and defense cooperation

Photo: People's Army Newspaper

Two sign Framework Participation Agreement for Vietnam's participation in EU crisis management operations.

by Jessica Nguyen

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission, Ms. Federica Mogherini, and Minister of National Defense General NGO Xuan Lich signed an agreement on October 17 establishing a framework for the participation of Vietnam in European Union (EU) crisis management operations.

The signing comes two months after Ms. Mogherini’s visit to Hanoi, in August. The Framework Participation Agreement sets a legal basis to govern and facilitate the participation of Vietnam in EU-led civilian and military crisis management operations. The EU missions and operations deployed outside the Union are the most visible EU commitment to a rules-based multilateral approach to international peace and security.

The signing of this agreement with Vietnam is a significant step forward in EU relations and shows an elevated ambition from both the EU and Vietnam to effectively implement their defense and security cooperation partnership. Vietnam becomes the second partner country in Asia to sign a Framework Participation Agreement with the EU, after the Republic of Korea, and the first in ASEAN.

With the signing, the EU and Vietnam have committed themselves to address shared security challenges in Asia and elsewhere. The EU’s Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP) provides the Union with the operational capacity to deploy both civilian missions and military operations, while agreements constitute an important instrument for the EU to strengthen the involvement of partners in this area.

CSDP missions and operations are a unique instrument in the EU’s toolbox allowing for direct action to manage a conflict or crisis and to focus on goals such as rule of law reform, stabilization, fighting organized crime, and reform of the security sector. This is done at the request of the country to which assistance is being provided and always in full respect of international law.

The EU now operates ten civilian missions and six military operations, which can include contributions of third-party states through the conclusion of Framework Participation Agreements. Including the agreement signed today with Vietnam, the EU now has Framework Participation Agreements in place with 19 partner countries.

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