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Southeast Asian defence pact can help region manage tensions, members say -Breaking


© Reuters. Hishammuddin Hussein, Malaysia’s Defence Minister gestures as he travels to the U.S. Multilateral meeting with Southeast Asia Defence Ministers during the 19th Shangri-La Dialogue. Singapore 10 June 2022. REUTERS/Caroline Chia


Gerry Doyle

SINGAPORE, (Reuters) – Top British officials said Saturday that the 51-year-old Five Power Defence Arrangements pact (FPDA), was strong, pertinent, and essential to manage rising tensions within the region.

The officials met on the sidelines to the Shangri-La Dialogue and stated that their relationship was good. They also said that they are focused on the future, despite increasing geopolitical complexity.

Hishammuddin, Malaysia’s Senior Minister of Defence, stated that tensions between the U.S. and China are increasing rapidly. The FPDA plays a vital role as a mediator force.

Hishammuddin expressed concern about unintended accidents and incidents that could spiral out of control, making it more than it already is. The FPDA and these platforms would not be able to handle incidents which sometimes spiral out of control.

Hishammuddin was also present. Hear from Ng Eng Hen (Singaporean Defence Minister), Ng Eng Hen (Australian Deputy Prime Min and Minister for Defence Richard Marles), Peeni Henare (New Zealand Defence Minister) and Kara Owen (British High Commissioner to Singapore). They all reiterated their support of the FPDA as well as acknowledged its future relevance.

Marles stated that Australia is committed to the FPDA. It’s something that we don’t take lightly.