UPDATED 1:03 PM PT — Monday, September 9, 2019
Top U.S. military officials are in Thailand to take part in the 11th annual Indo-Pacific Armies Chiefs Conference. Officials from both nations held an opening ceremony in Bangkok Monday.
“I also urge us to recognize although we have differences in language, history, culture and traditions, we all stand shoulder to shoulder united in preserving peace and stability in the region,” stated U.S. Army Chief of Staff James McConville.
The two day conference is considered to be the region’s largest biannual meeting of military chief of staffs. Participants say it’s meant to encourage mutual cooperation and address security threats from around the world, including human-trafficking and cyber warfare.
“I think the exercises are very important because we share mutual interest, they built our relationships between our militaries, and I think that having strong relationships leads to a secure and stable environment,” stated McConville. “I think we should continue those exercises because they lead to sustainable security in the region, and allow for economic growth for those who share the same interests as us.”
According to Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford, the conference will also address issues surrounding North Korea and efforts to disrupt ship-to ship oil transfers. Almost 40 nations are participating in the event, which is set to take place through September 11th.