Negroponte: Philippines is US partner in Southeast Asia
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The United States has the Philippines as the ideal partner in Southeast Asia, a veteran American diplomat said
Ambassador John D. Negroponte, a former US Director of National Intelligence and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, said during the 2nd Annual Dinner of the US-Philippines Society at the New York Stock Exchange on Friday that the two countries are keen on ensuring regional stability and security.
“Our two nations' concerns for ensuring regional stability offer new opportunities for security cooperation among longstanding treaty allies,” said Negroponte, a former envoy to Manila who co-chairs the society with businessman Manuel Pangilinan.
“Washington's strategic rebalance toward Asia is leading inescapably to a reinvigorated bilateral relationship with Manila,” he said in his remarks introducing Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert F. Del Rosario, who was the society’s guest of honor and speaker.
“In fact, I would argue that the Philippines is the logical partner for the US to anchor its ties to the ASEAN region,” he said.
Negroponte cited a sense of optimism and confidence in the Philippines because of President Benigno Aquino's policy of good governance.
“This is precisely what led a small group of like-minded Americans and Filipinos to come together to form the US-Philippines Society. We felt the time was right to make an effort to raise awareness in the United States of the exciting developments underway in today's Philippines,” he said.
Negroponte also praised Del Rosario for standing firmly in promoting and defending the Philippine national interest in the global arena.
“Secretary Del Rosario has enhanced the Philippines’ bilateral relationships and partnerships with international institutions by articulating Philippine interests and initiatives ranging from maritime security to economic cooperation, from counter-terrorism to people-to-people exchanges,” he said.
“Through his leadership, Secretary Del Rosario has staunchly defended the sovereignty and territorial integrity of his country, raised the standards of economic diplomacy, and proactively ensured the safety and security of overseas Filipinos everywhere,” he added.