Japan, Philippines agree to hold talks on reciprocal troop pact

Source: straitstimes.com straitstimes.com

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MANILA – The leaders of Japan and the Philippines on Friday agreed to start negotiations on a reciprocal troop access deal, strengthening military cooperation in the face of rising maritime tensions in the region and an increasingly assertive China. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said he and Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr agreed to work together closely with the United States and, in a veiled reference to China, shared concern about “unacceptable” attempts to “unilaterally change the status quo by force” in the East and South China seas. “A further decision was made to start negotiations on a reciprocal access...