Philippines Restores Key Military Pact With the US | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Philippines Restores Key Military Pact With the US

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has officially retracted his decision to scrap the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), a military pact with the US that outlines rules for US troops to be stationed in the Philippines on a rotational basis.

Duterte was ready to scrap the VFA last year and kick US troops out of his country over sanctions Washington imposed on Philippine officials. But he reversed the decision over tensions with Beijing in the South China Sea. The VFA was temporarily extended several times, and now the extension is permanent.

The decision was announced Friday by Philippine Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in a joint press conference with US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who is on a small tour of the region to shore up ties to counter China. “The president decided to recall or retract the termination letter for the VFA,” Lorenzana told reporters. “There is no termination letter pending and we are back on track.”