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Defense Secretary Carter: US-Philippines relationship stable

Robert Burns - Philstar.com

SINGAPORE — US Defense Secretary Ash Carter says the American alliance with the Philippines remains "iron clad," following the election of a new Philippines president who has said his country needs to chart a course more independent of the United States.

Carter spoke in an in-flight interview with reporters traveling with him Thursday to Singapore for an annual international security conference known as the Shangri-la Dialogue.

In April, during a visit to Manila, Carter announced new measures to strengthen US-Philippines defense relations. Since then, president-elect Rodrigo Dutere has said he will pursue policies making his country more independent of the United States.

Carter said the US has no plans to change course.

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