Brunei Deputy Minister of Defence Makes Working Visit to New Zealand
The Deputy Minister of Defence of Brunei Darussalam, Dato Paduka Haji Mustappa bin Haji Sirat, has made an official visit to New Zealand to further enhance defence cooperation between both countries.
Accompanying the Deputy Minister during the working visit was the Permanent Secretary, Colonel (Rtd) Pg Dato Paduka Haji Azmansham bin Pg Haji Mohamad and other military and defence officials.
During the visit, the Deputy Minister paid a courtesy call on the New Zealand's Defence Minister, The Honourable Dr Jonathan Coleman MP. Earlier, the Deputy Minister also met with the Chief of Defence Forces, Lieutenant General R.R (Rhys) Jones and the Secretary of Defence, His Excellency John McKinnon.
During the calls, both sides expressed satisfaction with the excellent and long-standing defence relations between Brunei Darussalam and New Zealand. They discussed various ways to strengthen and enhance further the existing defence cooperation.
The Minister's also discussed how Brunei Darussalam and New Zealand could work closely in forums such as the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) and the ADMM-Plus Meeting. New Zealand pledged its full support for Brunei's Chairmanship of the ADMM and ADMM-Plus in 2013, including Brunei's hosting of the 1st ADMM-Plus Human Assistance and Disaster Relief/Military Medicine Exercise that will be held in Brunei Darussalam in June, 2013.
Later in the evening, the Deputy Minister and his delegation attended a dinner hosted by His Honourable Dr Jonathan Coleman where the two sides engaged frank and in-depth discussions on a wide range of bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest.
During the three-day visit, the Deputy Minister will visit the Maritime Warfare Training Centre (MWTC) located at the Devonport Naval Base in Auckland.
Bilateral defence cooperation was established in the context of Brunei Darussalam - New Zealand Defence Programme signed on 11 April 1995. This programme involves regular military exercises in both countries, training cooperation under the Mutual Assistance Programme, senior level visits, ship and aircraft visits.
Source: WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND / 13 June 2012 - Ministry of Defence (Brunei Darussalam) News
Photo: The Minister of Defence of Brunei Darussalam, Sikorsky S-70i BlackHawk Photo by defenseindustrydaily.com)