VIENTIANE (VNS)— Viet Nam has urged ASEAN countries to strengthen the role of women in protecting the environment and dealing with climate change.

Speaking at the first ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Women held in Vientiane, Laos, yesterday, Viet Nam’s Minister of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs Pham Thi Hai Chuyen said there was a need to strengthen co-operation between ASEAN countries and UN organisations to further the role of women.

The meeting, titled Strengthening gender perspectives and partnership among ASEAN women for sustainable environment, focused on assessing the implementation of the ASEAN Committee on Women’s projects until 2015 and plans to promote gender equality, women’s rights and social equality in the region.

It also confirmed a commitment to push for the inclusion of gender issues in the building of the ASEAN Social-Culture Community.

The meeting issued a statement pledging to improve women’s knowledge and skills in environmental conservation and adaptation to climate change. — VNS