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US Commits 40M to Boost Philippine's Maritime Security

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US committed to the security of the Philippines

The United States has committed to give the Philippines $40 million to enhance its maritime security as the Philippines is facing a dispute with China over the West South China Sea.

In a remarks with Philippines Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosarioin Manila, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States is committed to working with the Philippine govenment to address its most pressing security challenges

"That's why we are negotiating a strong and enduring framework agreement that would enhance defense cooperation under our alliance, including through an increased rotational presence of US forces in the Philippines." - Secretary Kerry

President Ferdinand Marcos and U.S President Ronald Reagan in the 1980s. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

In addition, Secretary Kerry underlined that US supports efforts to reduce tensions surrounding the territorial and maritime disputes in the South China Sea.

The $40-million grant comes from the US Global Security Contingency Fund (GSCF) and the US will provide the funds in a span of 3 years.

US opposes the use of intimidation, coercion, or aggression to advance territorial claims

According to Secretary Kerry, United States remains firmly committed to the security of the Philippines and the region.

He also raised US deep concerns about China's announcement of an East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone.

"The United States does not recognize that zone and does not accept it." - Secretary Kery

Secretary Kerry reiterated that the zone should not be implemented, and China should refrain from taking similar unilateral actions elsewhere in the region, and particularly over the South China Sea.

US-Philippines enduring alliance

Secretary Kerry said the nited States is proud of the rich history that both countries share and its enduring alliance with the Philippines, which is an important democracy and one of America's key treaty allies in the dynamic Asia Pacific region.

Both countries are strong partners when it comes to trading and economic undertakings.

He said the United States is also one of the Philippines largest trading partners in Asia.

In 2012, $22 billion crossed between the countries in two-way trade.

"So we look forward to working with the Philippines to further deepen our trade relationship, understanding that this benefits both of us, that it creates jobs in America, in the Philippines." - Secretary Kerry

In a joint statement of the United States-Philippines Ministerial Dialogue, both countries reaffirmed commitment to strengthen alliance and enhance peace, security, and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific.

US-Philippines alliance is stronger than ever

In the joint statement between two countries in May 2012 stressed that the U.S.-Philippines alliance is stronger than ever, reflecting the deep and abiding ties linking two nations and forged through a history of shared sacrifice.

The statement underlined that when both countries signed the Mutual Defense Treaty in 1951, both nations are united against the spread of communism.

The statement also highlighted that Americans and Filipinos are inextricably bound by common values and shared aspirations, including a commitment to democracy and the rule of law, building a robust economic partnership, and deepening people-to-people ties.

The US-Philippines alliance has helped keep both of countries secure for more than 60 years, and it has been a bulwark of peace and stability in Asia.

It was highlighted that the United States does not take sides on the competing sovereignty claims to land features in the South China Sea, but as a Pacific power, the United States and Philippines have a national interest in freedom of navigation, the maintenance of peace and stability, respect for international law, and the unimpeded, lawful commerce across our sea lanes.

In November 2011, Secretary Clinton stood side-by-side with her Philippine counterpart Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario aboard the USS "Fitzgerald" in Manila Bay to sign the joint Manila Declaration, commemorating the 60th anniversary of the U.S.-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty.

The Treaty remains the foundation of the bilateral relationship. The Manila Declaration also sets forth a shared vision for strategic, political, economic, and people-to-people cooperation between two nations.

The U.S. government is also working closely with the Philippines to reduce poverty and increase economic prosperity. The U.S. fully supports Philippine efforts to eradicate corruption, to open economic opportunity for all, and to invest in health and education.

Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain english. Read more stories by Mina Fabulous. Contact Mina through NewsBlaze.

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