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ASEAN, partner countries officially launch joint maritime exercise in Brunei

Southeast Asia2016-05-03

The ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Defence Ministers Meeting- Plus Maritime Security and Counter Terrorism Exercise (ADMM Plus MS & CT) was officially launched Tuesday with an opening ceremony at the Multi National Coordination Centre (MNCC) in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei's capital.

The ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Defence Ministers Meeting- Plus Maritime Security and Counter Terrorism Exercise (ADMM Plus MS & CT) was officially launched Tuesday with an opening ceremony at the Multi National Coordination Centre (MNCC) in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei's capital.

The opening ceremony was officiated by Brunei's Commander of Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) Mohd Tawih who delivered his opening remarks and then proceeded with the activation of the Exercise Task Groups.

"The pressures we face today are greater than ever before as security challenges have proven to be more complex and very often cross between borders with relative ease and speed", Mohd Tawih said, "there is so much we can learn from each other and resolve challenges together."

"I believe that this exercise will provide that much needed platform of transparency and open communication in order to reduce any tension, enhance trust and build deeper cooperation among all the participating countries," he added.

Chinese military officers including Hu Weihua, task commander and head of a Destroyer Division of the Chinese Navy and Tang Yinchuan, captain of the "Lanzhou" guided-missile destroyer also attended the opening ceremony.

Navies of the 10 countries of the ASEAN participate in the drills, along with those from China, the United States, Russia, Australia, India, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea. The Chinese military sends "Lanzhou" destroyer along with 12 SWAT soldiers and four staff officers to the exercise.

According to the Exercise Co-Director, Seri Pahlawan, Joint Force Commander RBAF, a total of 18 warships, 16 helicopters, two Maritime Patrol Aircraft, counter terrorism elements and shore based personnel from the participating ADMM-Plus Nations is involved in the exercise.

Following the official launching of the exercise, the RBAF commander, senior officials and personnel from the participating ADMM Plus countries were taken for a tour of the Exercise Control Center in MNCC.

The ADMM Plus ADMM Plus MS & CT this year is co-hosted by RBAF and Singapore Armed Forces from May 1 to May 12 after the success of the ADMM-Plus Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief and Military Medicine (ADMM Plus HADR & MM) Exercise in 2013.

It is a multilateral exercise which aims to enhance military cooperation and increase interoperability between participating countries in responding to maritime threats.

The ADMM-Plus mechanism was proposed and founded by the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting, with the purpose of enhancing the mutual trust and cooperation between ASEAN and relevant countries in the Asia-Pacific region, and jointly responding to transnational non-traditional security challenges.

The multinational joint exercise this time is the first maritime security and anti-terrorism exercise under the framework of the ADMM-PLUS. 

(APD)

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