By Priam Nepomuceno
MANILA – The Philippines and the United Kingdom (UK) have both expressed strong support to calls for stability and security in the Indo-Pacific Region.
This came following the courtesy call of UK Ambassador to Manila Laure Beaufils to Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) vice chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Arthur Cordura, at Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City Tuesday.
“During their meeting, Ambassador Beaufils and the VCSAFP (Vice Chief of Staff AFP) discussed issues of mutual concern, including regional stability and international maritime law,” said AFP public affairs office chief Col. Jorry Baclor in a statement.
The two officials also affirmed security cooperation between Manila and London.
“They also stressed the importance of continued security and defense cooperation and welcomed possible future security engagements between the Philippines and the UK,” he added.
The meeting is part of the AFP’s international defense and security engagements.
“They also discussed and supported each other’s initiatives to maintain stability and security in the Indo-Pacific region against the backdrop of rules-based order and international law,” Baclor said.
Beaufils relayed the developments in the UK’s foreign and security policies in the Indo-Pacific, including the recently announced Australia-UK-US submarine program and the UK-Japan-Italy fighter jet development partnership.
She added that these, along with the persistent presence of the UK’s naval vessels in international waters of the Indo-Pacific, are part of the UK’s long-term investment in the region.
Cordura also extended the AFP’s gratitude to the UK for supporting its capacity enhancement through training and high-level exchanges.
“He also acknowledged the ongoing intelligence information sharing and expressed the AFP’s openness to future multilateral engagements with the UK and other allies that will promote common interests,” Baclor said. (PNA)