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PH, Japan to additional beef up protection engagements

MANILA – The Philippines and Japan wish to have extra substantial protection engagements within the coming years.

This got here after Department of National Defense (DND) officer in cost Undersecretary Carlito Galvez Jr.’s assembly with Japanese Defense Minister Hamada Yasukazu on the sidelines of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s official go to to Japan on Thursday.

“The meeting concluded with the two countries looking forward to substantial defense engagements in the future, such as a possible reciprocal visit of Japan’s Defense Minister in the Philippines, as well as the Philippines’ hosting of the 2nd Foreign and Defense Ministerial (2+2) Meeting,” DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong mentioned in an announcement Friday.

The two protection chiefs acknowledged the substantial progress of bilateral protection cooperation, particularly on the current signing of the Terms of Reference (TOR) regarding humanitarian help and catastrophe aid (HADR) actions between the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF).

“Both sides looked forward to the full implementation of the TOR in enhancing interoperability and capacities (of) the AFP and the JSDF on disaster response,” Andolong mentioned.

Galvez additionally took the chance to specific appreciation to Japan for its provision of coaching, and search and rescue (SAR) tools for the 525th Engineering Combat Battalion of the Philippine Army.

The similar engineering fight battalion is a part of the Philippine Humanitarian Team to Trkiye in mild of the current earthquake.

Meanwhile, Hamada mentioned Japan’s new National Security Strategy, which was lately printed in December 2022 that goals to strengthen Japan’s protection capabilities, together with counterstrike capabilities.

Galvez expressed appreciation for Japan’s transparency on its new protection insurance policies, and conveyed that Manila would proceed to work with Tokyo in making certain a peaceable, steady, and rules-based Indo-Pacific area.

Both ministers additionally exchanged views on regional safety developments and mentioned varied areas of cooperation by means of bilateral, minilateral, and multilateral platforms. (PNA)