Reds seek to halt US military exercises
(Philstar.com) - September 27, 2016 - 5:03pm

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines - The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) is urging the Duterte administration to order the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to stop the US military exercises set next week in Luzon.

At the same time, the CPP reiterated its call for the abrogation of the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty and other treaties such as the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA).

"These US military exercises are most untimely as the Duterte regime is trying to promote lay down its foundations for an independent foreign policy," the CPP said.

"The amphibious maneuver exercises to be conducted by the US military will simulate scenarios of a sea-to-land invasion," the CPP said, describing the planned Philippine Amphibious Landex Exercises to be conducted on October 4 to 12.

Four US naval ships—the USS Frank Cable, USNS Washington Chambers, USNS Millinocket and USNS Bowditch—are docked at Subic Bay since Monday. The USS BHR, USS Green Bay and USS Germantown will also join, where at least 1,400 US servicemen are expected to participate in the exercises.

Meanwhile, two C-130 Hercules aircraft with 100 Airmen from the 374th Air Wing (Japan) and 36th Contingency Response Group (Guam) are in Mactan-Benito Ebuen Air Base in Lapu-lapu City.

According to the CPP, the war exercises undermine the efforts of the Duterte administration to work out a peaceful settlement over the overlapping claims at the South China Sea.  

"These counteract the desire of the people to demilitarize the international trade route and guarantee equal access to everyone," the group said.

The 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty, according to CPP, would not benefit the Philippines since there are no assurances that the US will come to the aid of the country in times of war.

They added that the Philippines could even get dragged into US wars.

"There never was and there will never be mutual defense between the Filipino people and US imperialism because there are no common interests shared between the oppressed and their oppressors," the CPP said.

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