New prospects open up for closer cooperation between the Czech and Vietnamese armed forces

Autor: Nuala Casey, Oldrich Holecek

The Chief of the General Staff of the ACR, General Petr Pavel, visited the Socialist Republic of Vietnam on 14th–17th August, at the invitation of the Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People’s Army, General Do Ba Ty.

The visit, which was arranged in order to present to the Czech delegation the history, structure, activities, and training of the Armed Forces of Vietnam, began on Thursday with a ceremony at the Vietnam War Memorial in Hanoi.

General Do Ba Ty, who is also the Deputy Minister of National Defence of Vietnam, stated that he was keen to promote closer cooperation with the Czech Republic in areas such as education, training, and the modernisation of Vietnamese military equipment and technology.

"Further cooperation can be achieved by increased participation at specialist and long-term study courses at the University of Defence in Brno, and in the continued exchange of experiences and knowledge in order to modernising our military equipment, especially our radar, land and artillery equipment," said General Do Ba Ty.

The delegation also paid a courtesy visit to Defence Minister General Phung Quang Thanh, who also expressed his support on continued cooperation between the two countries. He said, "I value the Czech Republic as a long-term partner, particularly in specialised courses."

The Czech delegation also visited the Military Technical Academy, which prepares more than nine thousand military and civilian students in a variety of specialist studies. The Commander of the Academy, Major General Hguyen Cong Dinh, told the delegation that he considered the existing cooperation, with respect to military education, between the Czech Republic and Vietnam as highly beneficial. The delegation were then given a demonstration by Vietnamese students at the simulation technology laboratories at a laser fire shooting range using small arms. The training equipment was provided by the Czech company, the VR Group.

General Pavel and his delegation also visited the 63rd Air Defence Division, the Air Forces Command, and units of the 308th Mechanised Division, where talks with the commanders focussed on ways to promote bilateral defence cooperation, from education to equipment purchasing and delivery.

"We gladly welcome the Vietnamese party’s enthusiasm for continued cooperating with the Czech military, especially in education and in the exchange of knowledge and experiences. Further cooperation can be achieved by working together in the field of radar and simulation technology, and the future modernization of armaments and equipment holds great potential, not only for ACR but also for the Czech defence industry,“ stated General Pavel at the end of his visit to Vietnam.

August 27, 2014