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‘Movers, shakers’ to welcome Aquino to US


03:46 AM May 28th, 2012

By: Nimfa U. Rueda, May 28th, 2012 03:46 AM

President Benigno Aquino III

LOS ANGELES—President Benigno Aquino III will be honored by a new group of movers and shakers that was formed to enhance US-Philippine relations during the organization’s inaugural dinner in Washington, DC on June 7.

The US-Philippines Society, headed by founding chairs businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan and former US Ambassador to the Philippines John D. Negroponte, will host dinner at the Mandarin Oriental hotel on the eve of Mr. Aquino’s meeting with US President Barack Obama at the White House.

Negroponte, currently a research fellow and lecturer in international affairs at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, previously served as US Deputy Secretary of State and Director of National Intelligence.

The society’s vision is to elevate the Philippines’ profile in the United States and promote trade and investment and build shared strategic and political interests, according to the invitation sent out this week. It also aims to “strengthen educational, cultural, tourism and people-to-people ties, with emphasis on educational exchanges.”

“This vision was built on the rich historical ties between the Philippines and the United States to help bring that unique relationship fully into the 21st century at a time when US policy interests are increasingly focused on East Asia,” the invitation read.

The society, which is based in Washington, will seek to draw more attention to US-Philippine relations through programs that would bring together policy-makers, congressional leaders, think tank analysts, academicians and the media.

The invitation was signed by former Ambassador John F. Maisto, president of the society.

Maisto was formerly the US ambassador to the Organization of American States, ambassador to Venezuela  from 1997 to 2000, and ambassador to Nicaragua from 1993 to 1996.

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