ASEAN, Russia agree to strengthen security cooperation

Nusa Dua, Bali (ANTARA News) - ASEAN and Russia agree to strengthen security cooperation in the future, Indonesian Permanent Representative for ASEAN Ngurah Swajaya said here on Sunday.

"During the ASEAN-Russian senior officials meeting yesterday, both sides reaffirm their commitment to improve cooperation in the security sector namely in joint efforts to eradicate terrorism and transnational crime," he said after attending a preparatory meeting upon the start of the 44th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting and the 18th ASEAN Regional Forum in Bali in July 18-23, 2011.

He said the commitment to enhance security cooperation between ASEAN and Russia would be realized in the form of a joint statement signed by their foreign ministers.

Apart from cooperation in the security sector, he said, both sides also agreed to enhance cooperation in post-disaster management, humanitarian assistance and people-to-people contact.

Before, Indonesian Ambassador to Russia Hamid Awaludin stated relations between ASEAN and Russia needed to be enhanced more in the future. "A lot of sectors that need to be worked on such as trade, knowledge and investment," he said.

Meanwhile, Russian Ambassador to Indonesia Alexander Ivanov said ASEAN-Russian cooperation which had been started since 1996 had produced some significant documents on cooperation in sectors such as political, economic, trade, cultural and humanitarian assistance.

He said Russia saw ASEAN as an important player in efforts to connect the Asia Pacific region more in the future and Russia was ready to help realize the goal.