US, Philippines to restart joint patrols in South China Sea

  • The United States and the Philippines have agreed to restart joint patrols in the South China Sea as the long-time allies seek to counter China’s military rise.
  • During a visit to Manila by US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin, he and Philippine counterpart Carlito Galvez agreed to restart joint maritime patrols in the South China Sea to help address security challenges.
  • The officials had also announced a deal to give US troops more access to another four bases in “strategic areas” in the Southeast Asian nation.
  • The agreements come as the allies seek to repair ties that were fractured under previous Philippine president Duterte, who favoured China over his country’s former colonial master.
  • The agreement on joint patrols was made “at the last minute” of 2 Feb’s defence talks between Austin and Galvez.
  • There is firm agreement that the 2 nations will discuss guidelines of how to do these joint patrols.

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