Home NEWS Philippines receives 1st of two C-130 planes from US

Philippines receives 1st of two C-130 planes from US

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MANILA, Philippines — The US authorities on Thursday turned over the primary of two C-130H Hercules planes to the Philippines below the International Navy Financing grant program.

The plane, value P1.54 billion, is able to a most payload of 19,000 kilos, with a flying vary of over 1,900 kilometers, the US embassy in Manila mentioned in a press release yesterday.

The 220 Airlift Wing on the Philippine Air Power Brigadier Common Benito Ebuen Air Base in Cebu will personal and function the plane, it mentioned.

“The C-130 is a confirmed plane and demonstrated its attain and functionality to ship COVID-19 provides throughout the nation over the previous yr. We hope this extra plane will proceed to be a gradual workhorse, or ‘Tamaraw,’ for the Philippine Air Power for years to come back,” US embassy chargé d’affaires John Legislation mentioned.

The supply of the C-130H Hercules got here as the 2 international locations mentioned the destiny of the Visiting Forces Settlement (VFA), which President Duterte unilaterally terminated final yr.

The Philippines is by far the most important recipient of US army help within the Indo-Pacific area, the US embassy mentioned.

Since 2015, the US has delivered greater than P37 billion value of planes, ships, armored autos, small arms and different army tools to the Philippines, whereas additionally coaching side-by-side with its Filipino allies.

In the meantime, former Home speaker Alan Peter Cayetano urged the general public to belief Duterte’s dealing with of the VFA, saying the President has one of the best curiosity of the Philippines at coronary heart when he mentioned the US authorities should pay for the continuation of the settlement.

“Let’s not decide the President, the best way he says it. Truly, many presidents have mentioned the identical factor, that should you (US) wish to be within the Philippines, what’s in it for us?” Cayetano mentioned in an interview on Wednesday with reporters through the distribution of donations to barangay well being employees in Common Tinio, Nueva Ecija.

“We’d like to consider the Filipino folks. What units President Duterte aside is that he factors out that the connection or battle between China and the US is getting worse,” Cayetano mentioned.

“Let’s be clear. The US, though they place safety forces in several components of the world, they nonetheless put their pursuits first. Similar with China. Let’s not say what China is doing, particularly on the West Philippine Sea, is for others – it’s for China. So, what we have to assume is for the curiosity of the Philippines,” he mentioned.

President Duterte had mentioned in a speech delivered on the inspection of recent air belongings on the Clark Air Base in Pampanga on Feb. 12 that the US ought to pay if it needs to retain the VFA.

“It’s a shared duty however your share of duty doesn’t come free as a result of in any case, when the conflict breaks out, all of us pay,” he mentioned.

This drew criticism from Vice President Leni Robredo, who likened Duterte’s demand for fee to “extortion.”

Cayetano, nonetheless, mentioned the folks ought to anticipate that any president would place the curiosity of the nation “entrance and middle.”

“All he’s saying is, if the US has curiosity right here and needs their troops educated right here… how in regards to the Filipino folks? What’s in it for us?” he mentioned.

Duterte had introduced the termination of the pact on Feb. 11, 2020 however the choice was deferred months later to offer option to negotiations on a brand new protection association between the Philippines and the US.

Sen. Imee Marcos has defended Duterte’s stand that the Philippines ought to be higher compensated for enhancing the US army protection posture within the Asia-Pacific area.

“The Philippines not solely enhances the ahead protection perimeter of america within the Indo-Pacific area however even subsidizes its utility bills in our very personal bases,” Marcos mentioned in a press release.

“When many Filipinos can’t even pay their water and electrical energy payments amid this pandemic, how can the Philippines proceed subsidizing the utility bills of American forces?” she mentioned, citing US army advantages in Article 7 below the Enhanced Protection Cooperation Settlement (EDCA).

She reiterated her name for a radical overview of EDCA, saying it permits the US not solely to skirt the nation’s constitutional ban on international bases but additionally to keep away from paying the annual compensation that was due the Philippine authorities earlier than they have been abolished.

“Even superpowers want allies, and the brand new American pivot to the Asia-Pacific reveals the improved function of our area and the Philippines,” the senator mentioned in countering criticisms of Duterte’s demand for higher compensation as a type of extortion.

She mentioned she agreed with Duterte that the $3.9 billion in US army help to the Philippines from 2001 to 2017 was paltry in comparison with the $16 billion given to Pakistan in the identical interval.

She mentioned Washington fears that if the Pakistani authorities fails, the 150 nuclear warheads it has produced could fall within the arms of the Taliban and could possibly be used in opposition to the US.

With out the Philippines, America’s provide chain and safety commitments within the area are susceptible however the nation’s internet hosting of US forces makes it a possible and logical goal of adversaries if conflict breaks out within the area, even when it doesn’t instantly contain the Philippines, she mentioned.

“If China assaults Taiwan for its push in direction of independence, America’s dedicated response to guard Taiwan won’t be as swift, having to come back from bases in Japan, South Korea, Guam or Australia,” Marcos mentioned.

She mentioned human rights points could also be used in opposition to the Duterte authorities “to strike a cut price on what ought to strictly be a safety problem.” – Helen Flores, Ric Sapnu, Paolo Romero

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