US Congress leaders vow support for EDCA

Posted at 05/03/14 2:40 PM

MANILA -- Leaders of the United States Congress assured Vice President Jejomar Binay of their support for the recently signed Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA), the Philippine Embassy said on Saturday.

Binay, who is in Washington to keynote the Banyan Tree Leadership Forum at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), met with US congressional leaders at Capitol Hill on Thursday.

According to Binay, the US congressional leaders assured him of their support for closer defense cooperation between the two nations and building capabilities to respond to disasters.

"I am very glad to receive the assurances of US congressional leaders of their support for the Philippines and the enduring friendship between our countries and the Filipino and American peoples," he said.

He said the US leaders also vowed their continued support of Manila's efforts to rehabilitate areas devastated by super typhoon "Yolanda."

They also expressed hope for the immediate recovery of the people in the typhoon-hit areas, he added.

During their meeting, the vice president reiterated the Philippine government's appreciation for the immediate assistance extended by the US government.

"Vice President Binay's congressional meetings showed that the bipartisan support of the US for the Philippines and the Philippines-United States alliance is rooted in the US Congress which represents the American people," Ambassador Jose Cuisia Jr. said.

Binay held separate meetings with Maryland Senator Ben Cardin, Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on East Asian and Pacific Affairs; California Representative Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs; and Ohio Representative Steve Chabot, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, the Philippine Embassy said.

He was accompanied by Cuisia, Representative Abigail Binay-Campos; Makati Major Jejomar Erwin Binay; Edgardo Lacson, Consultant on Trade and Finance; Atty. Martin Subido, Legal Counsel; and Minister for Legislative Affairs and Consul General Ariel Penaranda.