By Yusrin Junaidi
His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, the Minister of Defence and Supreme Commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces, yesterday consented to receive in audience US Pacific Command (PACOM) USN Commander Admiral Timothy J Keating at the Istana Nurul Iman.
Accompanying Admiral Timothy J Keating were RBAF Commander Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awg Halbi and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Brunei Darussalam Emil M Skodon.
The monarch also consented to receive Guo Shengkun, the General Secretary of the CPC Party Committee of Guanxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
Present at the second audience held at the Istana Nurul Iman were Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Dewa Dato Seri Setia Awang Lim Jock Seng, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade II, Tong Xiaoling, the Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to Brunei Darussalam, Pg Dato Paduka Hj Abu Bakar bin Pg Seri Indera Pg Hj Ismail, Permanent Secretary at the Prime Minister's Office, Li Jinzao, Vice Governor of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, and Dato Paduka Awang Hj Shofri bin Hj Abdul Ghafor, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Separately, His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office, also consented to receive in audience Admiral Timothy J Keating, who was accompanied by Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awg Halbi and Emil M Skodon.
Also present at the audience ceremony were Permanent Secretary at the Prime Minister's Office Datin Paduka Hjh Salbiah bte Hj Sulaiman and Acting Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Defence Mohd Sharip bin Othman.
The two-day official introductory visit by Admiral Timothy J Keating since he assumed command of the United States Pacific Command on March 23, 2007 aims to strengthen the friendly relations and extend the importance of defence cooperation between both countries as well as the respective armed forces.
- Borneo Bulletin
(10th April 2008)