HANOI, 21 October 2013 - The ASEAN Disaster Emergency Response Simulation Exercise 2013 (ARDEX-13) kicks off today, 21 October 2013 in Hanoi, Viet Nam. All ten ASEAN Member States participate in this four-day event, which aims to practice, assess and review disaster emergency response mechanisms under the ASEAN Standby Arrangements and Standard Operating Procedures (SASOP). Deputy Prime Minister of Viet Nam, H.E. Hoang Trung Hai officially opens the exercise, which is co-organised by the Government of Viet Nam and the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management (AHA Centre). Beside participating representatives from ASEAN Member States and ASEAN Secretariat, observers from China, Japan, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, United States, United Nations, civil society organisations, and other international organisations also attend the event.