US defense chief arrives in PH, to meet with Duterte
MANILA, Philippines — US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin arrived in the Philippines on Thursday and is set to meet with President Rodrigo Duterte to “discuss avenues to further strengthen” Manila and Washington’s security cooperation.
Austin, who disembarked from the plane wearing a face shield — which is mandatory in the Philippines, was welcomed by US Embassy chargé d’affaires John Law with a fist bump.
“Sec. Austin will meet with Pres. Duterte and other government partners to discuss avenues to further strengthen US-Philippine security cooperation,” the US Embassy said in a tweet welcoming the defense secretary.
Welcome to the 🇵🇭, @SecDef Austin!
Sec. Austin will meet with Pres. Duterte and other government partners to discuss avenues to further strengthen U.S.-Philippine security cooperation. #USPHThrivingAt75 pic.twitter.com/tgYIRRl6S9FEATURED STORIESGLOBALNATION
— U.S. Embassy in the Philippines (@USEmbassyPH) July 29, 2021
Austin will meet with his Philippine counterpart, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana Friday morning, July 30.
He is also scheduled to meet with Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. Friday afternoon to discuss mutual security concerns.
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