US, Philippines to sign defense accord for 10 years

Washington, Apr 28(ANI): The United States and the Philippines will sign a 10-year defence agreement amid rising tensions between China and its neighbours.

Described as one of the biggest achievements of US president Barack Obama’s visit to Asia, this policy is likely to invoke criticism from the Chinese who have clearly opposed increased US presence in the area.

The agreement, however, provides assurance to various Asian countries in territorial disputes with China and also gives the US an advantage to mitigate natural disasters and respond to threats in the Southern China Sea region.

According to The Washington Post, the agreement does not provide for the establishment of US bases but would move American equipment and aircraft to the Philippines more frequently as well as engaging in more training exercises with the country’s forces.

Evan Medeiros,National Security Council’s Senior Director for Asian affairs has also added that the US wants a constructive relationship with China but also wants to establish concurrent policies and strategies with its allies.

Four other countries namely Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam are embroiled in a constant fight with China over territorial claims at the South China Sea as they can then get access to fisheries, gas deposits and underwater oil.

The pact had been under uncertainity for 8 months and was incorporated to be signed only recently during Obama’s visit. (ANI)