13th Asia security summit set to begin on Friday

SINGAPORE: The 13th annual security summit for the Asia-Pacific region is set to begin on Friday in Singapore to discuss regional security and cooperation.

The three-day security summit known as the Shangri-La Dialogue involves the United States and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, and comes amid heightened tensions between China and its neighbours over maritime territorial rows.

The Japanese Prime Minster Shinzo Abe will give the keynote address to the Shangri-La Dialogue.

The agenda of this year’s dialogue includes the challenges of maintaining and managing open seas, advancing military-to-military cooperation, managing strategic tensions, ASEAN and the emerging regional security order, the future of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), and ensuring agile conflict management in the Asia-Pacific.

The Asia security summit or Shangri-La Dialogue was initiated in 2002 and is an inter-governmental security forum held annually by an independent think tank, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). It is attended by defense ministers, permanent heads of ministries and military chiefs of 28 Asia-Pacific states.