Kerry: US to help Vietnam combat worst drought in 100 years

By    March 31, 2016 | 03:12 am PT
Kerry: US to help Vietnam combat worst drought in 100 years
The U.S. will assist Vietnam as it struggles with its worst drought in living memory, State Secretary John Kerry said in a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh on Thursday.

Kerry shared his concerns about the consequences of climate change and that Vietnamese people were suffering under extreme drought.

The two men met in Washington to discuss ways to strengthen the partnership between the two countries and details of the upcoming visit to Vietnam by President Barack Obama.

State Secretary Kerry said in the meeting that the president was looking forward to his first visit to Vietnam in May, and expressed his hope that bilateral cooperation would move forward and deepen between Vietnam and the U.S. on various strategic issues including climate change, education, science and technology.

Kerry also suggested the two countries step up their cooperation in maritime security and showed commitment in supporting Vietnam in improving the competence of its maritime forces in exercising jurisdiction over territorial waters.

The United States confirmed its support of settling disputes by peaceful means in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), refraining from the use of force or threat to use force, and halting reef construction and expansion in the East Sea. It also approved of devising mechanisms for regional joint development with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) playing the central role.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Minh traveled to Washington to attend the Nuclear Security Summit 2016, which provides a forum for world leaders to engage with each other and reinforce commitment at the highest levels to securing nuclear materials.

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