The Philippines Signs Security Pact with US Amid Tensions with China
On the April 28th, the Philippines signed a 10-year security pact--the Enhanced Defense Cooperation agreement--with the U.S. "to raise its defense capabilities amid territorial disputes with China."
According to Reuters, the pact "establishes a framework for a beefed-up rotation of U.S. troops, ships and warplanes through the Philippines."
The White House says the new pact reflects Obama's goal of turning "U.S. resources toward the fast-growing Asia-Pacific region."
And while China "has strengthened its maritime presence in disputed areas in the South China Sea," Obama administration officials say the pact is "aimed at bringing greater stability to the region, not at countering Beijing's growing military assertiveness."
Although the pact does not portend a return of U.S. military bases to the country, it does "allow U.S. forces to train and conduct exercises with Philippine forces for maritime security, disaster assistance and humanitarian aid."
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