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“The Philippine SOFA and the State of the Philippine-US security relations” Concepcion C. Asis Secretariat, Gathering for Peace, Philippines INTERNATIONAL.

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Presentation on theme: "“The Philippine SOFA and the State of the Philippine-US security relations” Concepcion C. Asis Secretariat, Gathering for Peace, Philippines INTERNATIONAL."— Presentation transcript:

1 “The Philippine SOFA and the State of the Philippine-US security relations” Concepcion C. Asis Secretariat, Gathering for Peace, Philippines INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM ON USA MILITARY BASES PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS AND MAKING A PEACEFUL URBAN LIFE Art Center in Ujijeonbu, Republic of Korea September 13, 2002

2 Philippines : of strategic military importance to the US

3 US Strategic Posture in the Asia Pacific Philippines strategic location for military forces gateway to the Pacific hub for protection of the sea lanes of trade staging ground to China, Russia and East Asia

4 Reclaiming our Sovereignty – the rejection of the RP-US Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Security

5 Brief History of US-Philippine Relations US colony Military Bases Agreement 1947 – Military Assistance Agreement, later known as Mutual Defense Assistance Agreement in – Mutual Defense Treaty

6 Return of the Troops –the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA)

7 Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) holding of joint military exercises between the Philippines, US and at times Singapore Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA) proposed Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) 1999 –Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA)

8 VFA features Visits of aircrafts, ships and vessels Access to 22 ports Geographic reach expanded to include Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao US personnel exempted and with extended privileges US have total jurisdiction over crimes committed by US personnel

9 VFA features Philippines waive right to exercise jurisdiction (over all offenses committed by US troops) Claims on damages to the environment and destructions caused by the activities of the VFA

10 Balikatan Exercises: direct intervention on our sovereignty

11 Balikatan 02-1 military exercises held from January – July military advisers, special forces and soldiers 160 were sent to Basilan, Mindanao were the Abu Sayaf bandits were based 250 in Zamboanga City 250 Mactan Airbase in Cebu

12 Balikatan 02-1 choice of Basilan and Zamboanga reflective of US policy of pre-emptive strikes against terrorists Operation “gentle wind” mobilized US development agencies to undertake community services to win the hearts and minds of the people affected

13 Balikatan 02-1 lack of secrecy and transparency in preparations blatant violations to the Philippine constitution wanton use of vigilantism against so- called terrorists crack down against activists increased tensions in the peace process

14 Towards the Re-establishment of the US Bases in the Philippines

15 Mutual Logistics Support Agreement (MLSA) “ Trojan horse” empty promises of military aid surrounded in secrecy no draft agreement present/released to date

16 MLSA features grants permanent basing services setting up of infrastructure offers not just 22 ports but the entire country as facility for land, sea and air spaces application of MDT expanded

17 MLSA features compromise diplomatic relations mechanisms for purchase and exchange of military materials considered Executive Agreement but will have effect and force of Treaty period covered will be ten years

18 THANK YOU !


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