Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michèle Flournoy and Permanent Secretary for Defence Chiang Chie Foo co-chaired the fourth U.S.-Singapore Strategic Security Policy Dialogue today at the Ministry of Defence in Singapore.
Flournoy and Chiang reaffirmed the longstanding and excellent bilateral U.S.-Singapore defense relationship. The discussions focused on the importance of the U.S.’s commitment to the region, and the need to continue the close cooperation in addressing transnational security threats. The dialogue also examined ways to further strengthen and expand the bilateral defense relationship.
Since its signing in 2005, the Strategic Framework Agreement has provided the foundation for broad-based defense cooperation across a wide range of areas including policy engagement, military operations and technology. The SFA underscores the two countries’ continuing belief that a strong U.S. security presence in the region promotes peace and stability. Flournoy and Chiang were pleased to note that much progress has been made in bilateral defense ties since 2005.
This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the memorandum of understanding the United States and Singapore signed in 1990. The MOU and its 1998 addendum allows U.S. armed forces, aircraft and vessels access to military facilities in Singapore, including the berthing of U.S. Navy deep draft vessels at Changi Naval Base.
The United States and Singapore militaries train together regularly and participate in joint military exercises. The United States has provided strong support for Singapore’s military training detachments stationed in the United States, such as Singapore’s F-15, F-16, Apache, Chinook and naval helicopter units. The opportunity to train in sophisticated ranges and alongside U.S. forces has strengthened the operational readiness and capability of the Singapore armed forces. There has also been substantive defense technology cooperation, including cooperation in research and development.
The United States and Singapore are also working together on stabilization and reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan and counter-piracy in the Gulf of Aden. Singapore is also part of the U.S.-led Proliferation Security Initiative and plays an active role by working closely with the United States and other PSI partners to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction.
During her visit, Flournoy will also meet with Prime Minister Lee, as well as with Acting Minister for Defence Ng Eng Hen on April 22.