facebook
twitter
search
search

U.S., Philippine military exercises begin

April 5, 2013 at 3:29 PM

MANILA, April 5 (UPI) -- The Philippines and United States began an annual joint military exercise in the South China Sea Friday, training 8,000 troops for disaster relief operations.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, in ceremonies beginning the 12-day exercise, spoke of the Philippines' need to "build our own capacity to defend ourselves, and defend ourselves, we will."

The military maneuvers come at a time the Philippines and China are involved in a diplomatic fight over claims of sovereignty in the South China Sea. Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei also have claims to the sea.

The Philippines has taken the matter to international arbitration, without China's participation, the Voice of America reported.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
10-month-old Turkish baby rescued after floating out to sea
Immigrant who shot S.F. woman was deported 5 times in the past, police say
Putin congratulates U.S. on Independence Day
Wisconsin's Walker in hot seat over open-records restrictions
5-year-old Florida girl killed by leaping sturgeon