Annual war games for Philippine and U.S. troops

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Philippine and U.S. troops held naval drills near a military outpost in Zambales province, south of Manila on Tuesday (April 21) as part of a 10-day joint

Annual war games for Philippine and U.S. troops

ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION)

STORY: Philippine and U.S. troops held naval drills near a military outpost in Zambales province, south of Manila on Tuesday (April 21) as part of a 10-day joint exercises.

The annual “Balikatan” (shoulder-to-shoulder) war games are part of a new U.S. military initiative known as Pacific Pathways, involving a series of drills across the Asia-Pacific as the US deploys more troops, ships and aircraft in the region.

Not far from Scarborough Shoal, about 750 Marines from the Philippines and U.S. landed on a beach in two waves using amphibious assault vehicles, to retake an island in a mock battle during the largest-ever drills in years in the country.

More than 11,000 American and Filipino troops will take part in the 10-day drill on the islands of Luzon, Palawan and Panay, which started on Monday (April 20). The war games will see U.S. fighters rehearse bombing runs and troops involved in live fire drills.

The exercise comes a few days after the Philippines said it was seeking more “substantive” support from the United States on how to counter China’s rapid expansion in the South China Sea.

China’s rapid reclamation around seven reefs in the Spratly archipelago of the South China Sea has alarmed claimants, including the Philippines and Vietnam, and drawn growing criticism from U.S. government officials and the military

Tags : troops, us, Philippine, games, annual

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