MANILA – The United States is eyeing to advance the country’s air and naval weaponry by deploying advanced equipment in the country.
Following China’s massive reclamation activities in the disputed territories, the country is now seeking “substantive support” from the US, its long-time ally.
In an interview on ANC, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario cited the statements of US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter.
“According to the new Department of Defense secretary in the United States, Secretary Carter, they are already looking at deploying to the Philippines various advanced equipment, air force equipment, naval equipment, maritime domain equipment. These were outlined by Secretary Carter recently and we welcome this,” Del Rosario said in an interview on ANC.
Del Rosario, however, did not give details as to the type or kind of the said military equipment.
“The first time that it was announced was a few days ago… this is the first time we are hearing about it. We have not engaged in discussion so we will find out more about what these plans involve,” Del Rosario said.
He also said that the plans will also require US presence in the country.
“It will require US presence. We have not talked about what extent this will happen but with those equipment you can surmise that there will be a US presence,” he added.
“We are, at this point, seeking additional support from the United States in terms of being able to take a stronger position in defending our position, which is to uphold the rule of law,” Del Rosario told journalists later yesterday.
The said announcement was made following US President Barack Obama’s expression of concern over China’s using its “sheer size and muscle” to push around the smaller nations involved in the dispute.