Hello and welcome to the details of South-east Asian defence pact helps ‘balance’ region, members say and now with the details
Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - Malaysian Defence Minister Seri Mohamad Hasan meets with Singaporean Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore. — AFP pic
SINGAPORE, June 3 — Top officials from Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and Britain said today that their 52-year-old Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) pact helped keep things in balance amid regional tensions.
“The longstanding FPDA... always been an important part of ensuring signalling collective defence in this region,” New Zealand defence minister Andrew Little said at a media briefing on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore.
As the tensions between the United States and China persist, the longstanding relationships among smaller nations are “what keep things in balance”, Little said.
“I’m comfortable continuing to keep things in balance as different countries including the major powers work out how the relationships are working,” he added.
Singaporean Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen, Australian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Richard Marles, Malaysian Defence Minister Seri Mohamad Hasan, Little, and British Defence Minister Ben Wallace discussed the importance of the FPDA as a constructive and peaceful arrangement.
The ministers also talked about collaborating in unconventional ways in the face of contemporary security challenges.
“We are five countries who are deeply committed to a rules-based order and promoting peace within our region,” Marles said.
Increased regional involvement by nations in and outside Asia has been a recurring theme at the security meetings, with comments on the subject from Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese on Friday night, and US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin echoing the sentiments in a speech this morning. —Reuters
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