Jakarta (ANTARA) - The governments of Indonesia and Laos, through the Ministry of Defense of both nations, inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on defense.

The MoU was signed on the sidelines of Laos Minister of Defense General Chansamone Chanyalath’s honorary visit to his Indonesian counterpart Prabowo Subianto at the office of the Defense Ministry, Jakarta, Wednesday.

Minister Subianto held an honorific ceremony to welcome the Laos defense minister's honorary visit to the Ministry of Defense's office.

Subianto and Chanyalath held a bilateral meeting that was followed by the inking of the MoU on defense cooperation between the defense ministries of both nations.

Deputy Minister of Defense Sakti Wahyu Trenggono, Secretary General of the Ministry of Defense Agus Agus Setiadji, several officials of the Ministry of Defense, the Indonesian ambassador to Laos, and the Indonesian Defense Attaché in Laos were also attendees at the MoU-signing event.

Meanwhile, the delegation from Laos comprised Laos Ambassador Thepthavone Sengmany, Laos Ministry of Defense Secretary General Maj. Gen. Khamsy Vhongkhamsao, Deputy Chief of the Laos Ministry of Defense Staff General Maj. Gen. Chantong Soneta At, and several officials of Laos’ Ministry of Defense.

The MoU on cooperation in the defense sector was signed by both parties as a legal umbrella for intensifying cooperation between both nations in the defense sector.

The scope of cooperation encompassed exchange of visits between defense and military officials; information exchange in the field of defense cooperation; and exchange of views on challenges pertaining to national, regional, and international security.

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Furthermore, it entailed capacity building cooperation to hone the capabilities of human resources as well as cooperation in other fields that is beneficial for both countries.

Bilateral cooperation in the field of defense between Indonesia and Laos has been going well since 1970. This was marked by visits between defense officials of the two countries and the Laos Armed Forces officers participating in gaining education in Indonesia.

Indonesia will make steady efforts to contribute to bolstering the capabilities of the Laos Armed Forces’ officers by offering various forms of military education. During the period between 1970 and 2019, Laos had sent five officers to join the command school of armed forces.

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Currently, a Laos Armed Forces Officer is receiving Indonesian language training at the language center of the defense ministry.

Chanyalath’s honorary visit to the Indonesian defense minister has become the second meeting opportunity between the two ministers following their first meeting held on the sidelines of the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting some time back in Bangkok, Thailand.

During this visit, the Laos defense minister had the opportunity to witness the display of SS1 and G2 weapons products produced by PT Pindad (Persero). Chanyalath is also scheduled to visit the Defense University in Sentul, Bogor, and the National Monument (Monas).

Special Staff of the Minister of Defense for Public Communication and Inter-Institutional Relations Dahnil Anzar Simanjuntak confirmed Laos’ interest in the Indonesian arms industry.

"As usual, Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto, during meetings with his counterparts from other nations, consistently offered and introduced Indonesian weapons, especially those produced by PT Pindad," Simanjuntak added.

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Translator: Syaiful H, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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