Philippines in US, Japan naval drills amid China sea row

Manila has been holding the naval drills with its longtime ally Washington since 1995. But the exercise with Tokyo, a World War II foe, is only its second ever after one earlier this year.


This week’s Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) drill with Washington will include a P-3 Orion aircraft, of the type used by the US to monitor the South China Sea.


China claims almost the entire Sea despite competing claims from the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam, and has been taking strong action including reclamation to assert sovereignty.


“CARAT remains a practical way to address shared maritime security priorities, enhance our capabilities, and improve inter-operability between our forces,” the US exercise commander, Rear Admiral William Merz, said at the opening ceremony in Puerto Princesa city on the southwestern Philippine island of Palawan.


Rear Admiral Leopoldo Alano, commander of the Philippine Fleet, described the drill as a great opportunity “to gain valuable experience and increase our inter-operability.”


Read More: Philippines in US, Japan naval drills amid China sea row – Yahoo News