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The Ministry of National Defence partnered with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to hold a virtual symposium themed “Cyber Warfare and International Humanitarian Law: Implications for Regional Security in the Context of COVID-19” on November 2.
The event saw the presence of representatives from member states of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus (ADMM-Plus) which gathers 10 ASEAN nations and its eight dialogue partners – Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Russia, and the US.
Hosting the conference, the Vietnamese side expected to exchange views and experience in exercising the International Humanitarian Law related to cyber warfare so as to effectively advise higher level authorities in crafting plans for the implementation of the international law in line with the Vietnamese laws and international conventions.
The symposium also helped raise the capacity to ensure cyber security in the region, especially among ADMM-Plus member countries.
Addressing the event, Major General Tong Viet Trung, Deputy Commander of Cyberspace Operation Command (Command 86), said as the Chair of the ADMM and ADMM-Plus this year, the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence has made every effort to effectively maintain the defence cooperation process on cyber security within the ADMM-Plus via virtual meetings amid COVID-19
Together with other ASEAN member states, Vietnam has agreed that critical information technology (IT) infrastructure should be seen as national properties that form a backbone of the most important functions, services and operations in the society, Trung said.
He added Vietnam has focused on strengthening cyber security potential for the protection of the critical IT infrastructure through intensive training and capacity building for specialised cybersecurity forces, accelerating experience sharing and international cooperation in responding to attacks to such infrastructure.
Vietnam supports the application of the International Humanitarian Law to settle cyber warfares, he continued, noting that the Vietnamese Ministry of Defence is committed to actively and responsibly participate in ASEAN’s defence cooperation mechanisms in cyber security in order to prevent cyber attacks, violations of national sovereignty on cyberspace and cyber warfares.
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The country has concentrated on enhancing capacity to ensure cybersecurity for important information systems through promulgating the Law on Cyber Security 2018 and implementing the "National Digital Transformation Program by 2025, with orientations toward 2030” with the target to taking Vietnam to enter the list of world’s top 50 countries in e-government development (EGDI). Besides, Vietnam has paid attention to build codes of conduct on cyberspace based on principles and 11 voluntary standards of the United Nations to maintain healthy and safe cyberspace.
In terms of international cooperation, the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security will preside over the 14th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC 14) expected to take place in November. Vietnam also attended the 20th ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime (SOMTC 20) last September.
Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security has always identified cyber and high-tech crimes as the main front to strengthen coordination with law enforcement agencies of ASEAN countries, especially with Singapore. In addition, Ministry of Public Security pledged to promote the work of ensuring cybersecurity in the depth, corresponding with the theme “For a cohesive ASEAN against transnational crime".
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