Violent dispersal at US Embassy in Manila condemned
MANILA (Mabuhay) – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Thursday said that the visit of US President Barack Obama will further improve security and defense ties between the United States and the Philippines.
Obama is slated to visit the country this coming April 28 to 29.
“The AFP believes that the visit of US President Barack Obama will further strengthen the relationship between the American and Filipino nations, especially in terms of mutual security and defense cooperation,” AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala said.
Aside from this, both countries have a long tradition of partnership.
“The US military and the AFP shares a long history of partnership built on the Mutual Defense Treaty. This visit will also affirm that partnership in order for both the US and the Philippines to create a mutually beneficial environment aimed at addressing broad regional and global challenges, including maritime security, climate change, terrorism, and transnational crimes among others,” Zagala pointed out.
Malacañang earlier stated that ways to intensify political and security cooperation between the Philippines and the United States will be discussed during Obama’s visit.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the PHL-US wide-ranging security partnership includes joint military exercises, such as “Balikatan” and humanitarian assistance and disaster response activities.
It will also include defense and security assistance that supports Philippine efforts toward achieving enhanced defense capabilities.
“The treaty alliance between the Philippines and the US has been a cornerstone of peace and stability in the region,” Coloma said, noting that the United States is the only defense treaty ally of the country.
Meanwhile, The Alliance-Philippines and the Bantay Pilipinas-USA vehemently condemned the violent dispersal of hundreds of anti-US intervention and anti-bases protestors by Manila authorities at the Plaza Salamanca in front of the US Embassy in Manila on Wednesday, April 23.
The Alliance/Bantay Pilipinas-USA chided the local police who they said “brutally dispersed the rally, bombarded the multi-sectoral protesters in Manila with water cannons, bludgeoned them with truncheon and arrested the protestors” in what they described as “an apparent fascist attacked reminiscent of the days of Marcos martial law era and the GMA emergency rule in 2006-2010. “
The Alliance /Bantay Pilipinas-USA claimed that “The US and the Philippines are about to inaugurate another chapter of the US-PH military cooperation by allowing access and rebuilding of permanent US bases in the Philippines in the guise of ‘access and security cooperation” which is tantamount to PH sell out of its national sovereignty and dignity.’”