Vietnam president hails US as strategic partner

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Vietnam always attaches importance to relations with the United States as a leading strategic partner, President Truong Tan Sang said Thursday during his meeting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Sang is in Honolulu for the 19th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders' Week.

During the talk, Sang praised Clinton's contributions to the development of Vietnam-US relations and welcomed stronger cooperation between the United States and Asia-Pacific for peace, stability and development in the region.

He believed that the APEC 2011 meeting will make important contributions to promote cooperation, connectivity and economic recovery in the region, and to raise APEC's prestige.

The recent strong development of Vietnam-US relations on a bilateral and multilateral scale will create an important foundation to lift bilateral ties to a new height, he said.

Clinton affirmed the United States wants to bolster multifaceted cooperation with Vietnam, including bringing the two countries' relationship toward a strategic partnership.

She said the United States will continue its cooperation with concerned parties to contribute to maritime freedom and safety, and that the US supports the peaceful settlement of sovereignty disputes in the East Sea on the basis of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties on the East Sea (DOC).

The United States opposes the use of force, supports countries that have rights to use resources within their economic exclusive zone and welcomes efforts to establish the Code of Conduct (COC) of Parties in the East Sea, she added.

The same day, Sang met with Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie, leaders of some US businesses, representatives of the Vietnamese-American community and Vietnamese students in Hawaii.

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