Russia looking for more engagements with Asean nations, says defense chief

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MANILA: Russia wants more engagements with Asean member states, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has said.

“I think they would like to have an engagement with Asean and since we are the chairman now, maybe they would like to have a foothold maybe to deal with the other members of the Asean,” Lorenzana said when asked about the warming of security and defense ties between the Philippines and Russia, during an interview on PNA Exclusive in Moscow, Russia at about 2 p.m. Tuesday (7 p.m. in Manila).

“In fact, they are already dealing with other members of Asean, like Vietnam, because they had a close relationship before. In fact, Vietnam has bought from them some military equipment.”

Lorenzana was part of President Rodrigo Duterte’s four-day visit to Russia, a trip that was cut short by the fighting between Maute Group terrorists and military units in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur.

Earlier, the two nations signed an Agreement on Defense Cooperation that will pave the way for more exchanges between their defense establishments. AFP

AFP/CC

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