Palace: No need for Senate to ratify new US defense deal
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — The Senate’s approval won’t be needed for the pending “enhanced defense” agreement with the United States, Malacañang said Saturday.
“It is the Philippine panel’s position that the Agreement on Enhanced Defense Cooperation merely implements the general provisions of Mutual Defense Agreement and the Visiting Forces Agreement,” Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma said in a text message to media.
Upon consultation with Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Benjamin Caguio, Coloma said the two treaties have been concurred by the Philippine Senate in separate instances.
“Thus, there is no need for Senate ratification for this implementing Agreement on Enhanced Defense Cooperation,” he said.
The governments of the Philippines and the United States are currently negotiating increased US military presence in the country, at least on a rotational basis, amid territorial disputes with China.
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