#AceNewsServices – MANILA – Philippines (AP) – President Barack Obama said a 10-year agreement signed Monday to give the U.S military greater access to Philippine bases will help promote regional security, improve armed forces training and shorten response times to humanitarian crises, including natural disasters.
The deal was signed as Obama arrived in the Philippines, ending a week-long, four-nation Asia tour on something of a high note.
The Enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement will give American forces temporary access to selected military camps and allow them to preposition fighter jets and ships and is being seen as an effort by Washington to counter Chinese aggression in the region.
Concerns about the U.S role military role here led to recent clashes outside the U.S. Embassy in the capital of Manila between police and more than 100 left-wing activists who protested Obama’s visit and the new security arrangement.
Activists say the agreement reverses democratic gains achieved when huge U.S. military bases were shut down in the early 1990’s, ending nearly a century of American military presence in the Philippines, a sensitive issue in this former U.S. colony.
These are the key points in the 10-year defence pact between the Philippines and the US.
-Clear provision that the US would “not establish military presence or base in the Philippines
-US access to and use of designated areas in AFP owned and controlled facilities (“Agreed Locations”) will be at the invitation of the Philippine government
-Prior consent of the Philippines, through the MDT and Security Engagement Board, with regard to US access and use of Agreed Locations which may be listed in an annex and further described in implementing arrangements
-Philippine retention of primary responsibility for security of the Agreed Locations
-Access of the AFP base commander to the entire area of the Agreed Locations;
-Philippine ownership of buildings and infrastructure once constructed by US military;
-Sharing and joint use of facilities in the Agreed Locations, including those of used by US military;
-Value of prepositioned material in the enhancement of AFP defence capabilities and possible transfer of purchase of materiel determined to be excess
-Prohibition of entry to the Philippines of nuclear weapons and reference to respective obligations of both Parties under the Chemical Weapons Convention and the Biological Weapons Convention
-Strong commitment by both parties in protecting the environment, human health and safety
-Preference for Philippine suppliers of goods, products and service in US military procurement
-Regular consultation of the implementation of the agreement
The following is the full copy of the FAQ released by the DFA.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the Enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) signed April 28, 2014
Ace Related News:
- April 28 – Enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) – http://tinyurl.com/n6on7js
2, April 28 – http://tinyurl.com/knk22q5