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Duterte gives US notice of “last” war exercise

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Presidente Rodrigo Duterte has verbally given a notice to the United States of America that the scheduled war games between the Philippines and the USA next month would be the last.

In his talk before the Filipino community here in Hanoi, Vietnam Wednesday evening, September 28, Duterte said that he would be establishing new alliances with other countries like China and Russian.

Duterte earlier said that the US has been undermining the Philippines as he blamed America for the plunging peso which he said is being manipulated.

“I will visit China. I will open the door for everyone. I will go to Russia. I’m serving notice now to the US. I will maintain the alliance but I will establish new alliances. I serve notice to you now that this will be the last joint military exercise with US,” said Duterte.

US and the Philippines has scheduled an annual Philippines Amphibious Landing Exercise (PHIBLEX) to be held from October 4 to 12 in multiple locations in Luzon, including Palawan.

It will be the first war games between the two treaty allies under the Duterte administration.

Approximately 1,400 US servicemen based in Okinawa and 500 Filipino soldiers will train “side-by-side to grow capabilities and better prepare to operate together during a natural disaster or armed conflict”.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. however clarified that what the President was referring to was the joint military exercise with other countries within the territorial waters but outside the 12-mile radius.

Yasay said President Duterte was not specifically referring to the Balikatan exercise.

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