AFP yet to discuss Edca with US–spokesperson
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has yet to formally discuss the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (Edca) with the United States after the Supreme Court affirmed its legality on Tuesday.
“This (Edca ruling) is a good development because whatever discussions and plans that were held earlier by our defense department with our US counterparts can now be held again and with a high degree of confidence the implementation can be carried out,” AFP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla said on Wednesday.
“The Armed Forces has voiced out that it is gladly welcoming the final decision of the Supreme Court on the matter and finally all qualms and doubts on Edca can be laid to rest and discussions of its full implementation can now be done confidently in the thought that there are no other legal impediments,” he said.
He also reiterated previous statements by the Philippine and American governments that the agreement was not aimed at any country.
“We’re not aiming at any country. It’s just that we need to help each other in common interest areas. You know that we have a long-standing agreement we call the Mutual Defense Treaty,” the spokesperson said.
The agreement would allow increased rotational presence of American troops in the Philippines. It was signed hours before United States President Barack Obama arrived in the country in 2014.
The SC ruling coincided with the day US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in the country for a two-day visit.
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