PH, US to hold 6th round of talks on defense deal

Posted at 03/04/2014 6:17 PM | Updated as of 03/04/2014 6:17 PM

MANILA - The Philippines and United States will hold the 6th round of negotiations on the proposed Agreement on Enhanced Defense Cooperation on March 4 to 5 in Washington, DC.

The sixth round will be followed by the Philippine-US Bilateral Strategic Dialogue (BSD) on 6-7 March, which will also take place in Washington DC.

Defense Undersecretary Lorenzo Batino, the head of the Philippine negotiating panel, promised the government will “continue to articulate and promote our national values and interests and will remain guided by the principles of full respect for Philippine sovereignty, non-permanence of US troops and no US basing in the Philippines, mutuality of benefits and respect for the Philippine Constitution, including the prohibition against nuclear weapons."

The fifth round was held in January, with both sides reaffirming their commitment to enhancing security cooperation, humanitarian assistance, and disaster response.

The sixth round of talks comes ahead of the visit of US President Barack Obama in April.