CLARK /Philippines/, October 24. /TASS/. Moscow is ready to assist the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in preventing the spread of international terrorism, particularly impeding the infiltration of terrorism into the Asia-Pacific countries, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday.
"Russia is ready to provide all the necessary assistance in strengthening the capabilities of the ASEAN member states and dialogue partners in order to effectively counter these threats," he said addressing the fourth meeting of defense ministers of the ASEAN member states and dialogue partners.
According to Shoigu, in the seven years that passed since its establishment, the Council of defense ministers of the ASEAN member states and dialogue partners has turned into an effective mechanism for regional military cooperation. "We have good potential for cooperation in fighting international terrorism, ensuring maritime security, humanitarian interaction, emergency management and demining," he said.
The Russian defense minister said that the joint statement on counter-terrorism, adopted by Russia and ASEAN in August 2017, was an important milestone. "It was the first step towards joint actions aimed at combating the extension of the ISIL’s influence [ISIL is a former name of the Islamic State terror group outlawed in Russia - TASS]," Shoigu said.
He also thanked all the countries for their fruitful cooperation within the Council of defense ministers of the ASEAN member states and dialogue partners, and congratulated the Philippines on the excellent organization of the event. "We would like to wish success to Singapore, which is taking over the ASEAN chairmanship," the Russian defense minister added.