NEW DELHI: On ‘The Gist‘, Don McLain Gill, Director for South & South East Asia at the Philippine-Middle East Studies Association (PMESA) Manila, in conversation with StratNews Global Associate Editor Amitabh P. Revi. Don McLain Gill discusses the Philippines-U.S. deal during Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin’s visit “to accelerate the full implementation of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA)” by agreeing to designate four new military bases, the U.S. reiterating its “ironclad” alliance with the Philippines, Washington “reaffirming an armed attack on Philippine armed forces, public vessels, or aircraft, including those of the Coast Guard in the South China Sea, would invoke U.S. mutual defence commitments” under the 1951 Treaty, China’s repeated provocations, the latest being a Coast Guard ship being accused of “dangerous manoeuvres” and using “military grade lasers” that temporarily blinded a crew member on a Philippine Coast Guard vessel, Philippines President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr’s visit to Japan, his saying the Philippines may ink a Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) with Japan soon, foreign policy under Marcos Jr vis-a-vis under his predecessor Rodrigo Duterte, and the Philippines-India partnership including the first deliveries of the $ 375-million BrahMos supersonic missile system, scheduled this year.
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