05 Mei 2014
Subic Bay naval base (photo : US Navy)
MANILA (PNA) -- Department of National Defense (DND) undersecretary and Philippine panel negotiation chair Pio Lorenzo Batino on Friday announced that they are looking at the possibility of offering only two Philippine military bases for American use under the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA).
"The direction of the DND and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is to recommend only the usage of only two military bases, (those) agreed locations as defined under the EDCA and we believe these number of locations will already be sufficient to implement the objectives of the EDCA," he said.
"And number two, the direction of the DND and the AFP when identifying the agreed locations would be to limit and delineate only a limited portion or a limited area of the agreed AFP base which would be shared to the US, it will not be the whole AFP base identified as we need that AFP base," Batino pointed out.
The DND official also clarified that they will also study the areas that will be allocated for the EDCA before declaring it for that purpose.
He declined to comment on how many US soldiers will be deployed to camps as these are operational matters.
"These are operational details, (I) can't just talk about troops (as) these are operational details that differ every year depending on activities approved by the AFP and the Pacific Command through the Mutual Defense Board and the Security Board so we cannot (just give) definite numbers of US troops coming in and out our country," Batino added.