Press Release
June 29, 2013

Statement of Senator Loren Legarda,
Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,
On US Access to Military Bases in PHL

"The Department of National Defense and the Armed Forces are pursuing a modernization program as part of efforts to strengthen our defense capabilities. Allowing access to US military forces to our bases may be done but strictly under the purview of the Visiting Forces Agreement.

"The VFA will continue to be enforced to ensure that US military presence remains within the bounds of the VFA framework. The same is true with Australia where we have an existing Status of Visiting Forces Agreement, which has already been ratified by the Senate. As it is there are joint exercises and initiatives, and to a certain extent, access to our facilities is allowed but according to well-defined terms. Under this scenario, there is no need for renewed Senate approval."

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