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Philippines Seeks Larger US Military Presence

The Associated Press reports that “a┬áproposed increase in the U.S. military presence in the Philippines, including the pre-positioning of equipment, will help the country defend its territorial waters amid a conflict with China in the South China Sea, officials said Monday.”

“The countries will start talks Wednesday in Manila on an agreement that will allow more American troops to rotate through Philippine military bases, government negotiator Carlos Sorreta said.”

“Hundreds of American troops already have been stationed in the southern Philippines for counter-terrorism training since 2002 and also hold annual combat exercises with Filipino troops dealing with Muslim and communist insurgents, along with al-Qaida-linked militants.”