Dont want to get involved in war! Philippine Defense Minister wants to review the Common Defense Treaty again.

 Dont want to get involved in war! Philippine Defense Minister wants to review the Common Defense Treaty again.

(Filipino Defense Minister Lorenza Information Map)

According to the New York Times, Philippine Defense Minister Lorenzana proposed that the Philippines and the United States review the US-Philippine Joint Defense Treaty signed 68 years ago because the Philippines did not want to be involved in the war in the South China Sea.

Lorenzana said on the same day that the security environment in the region has become much more complex since the United States-Philippines Joint Defense Treaty was enacted 68 years ago. The Philippines has not clashed with anyone and will not clash with anyone in the future, Lorenzana said.

Lorenzana also mentioned the increasing activity of U.S. naval vessels in the South China Sea, which is more likely to involve them in a hot war. He explained that, as a result of the Common Defence Treaty, the Philippines would automatically participate in any such conflict.

What worries me is not that [the United States] is not keeping its promises, but that it is getting us involved in a war that we are not seeking or wanting. Lorenzana said.

Reported that Lorenzana made this statement a few days ago, U. S. Secretary of State Pompeo just in front of President Douter, Fiji, assured that the United States will support the Philippines in the South China Sea. During his visit to the Philippines, he promised that if Philippine troops or ships were attacked in the South China Sea, the United States would take action to fulfil its commitment to the Common Defense Treaty.

The New York Times interpreted the Philippine Defense Ministers remarks as questioning the US commitment to the Philippines and warning about unexpected consequences.

Jay Batongwakar, director of the Institute of Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea at the University of the Philippines, told the New York Times in response to the comments made by the Philippine Defense Minister. Although the Defense Minister raised legitimate concerns, the US-Philippines Joint Defense Treaty would not automatically involve the Philippines in the conflict between the United States and China. Batongwakar said that any decision to join such conflicts must comply with the Philippine Constitution, even under the requirements of the Common Defence Treaty.

If the Philippines does not want to participate in the war, it can opt out, Batonwakar explained. I think the issue of automatic participation is often exaggerated and misunderstood.

Batongwakar added that, as requested by the Philippine Defense Minister, the review of the Common Defence Treaty would be essentially an assessment (act) and would not necessarily lead to amendments.

In fact, Philippine Defense Minister Lorenzana had previously expressed his wish to abolish the Common Defence Treaty. On December 28 last year, Lorenzana said that lawyers from the Ministry of Defense had been instructed to review the Common Defence Treaty signed by the Philippines and the United States, which could be abolished if the treaty is no longer relevant to the Philippinesnational interests. In response, the US side urgently said that it still believed in the alliance between the United States and the Philippines.

On August 30, 1951, the United States and the Philippines signed the Treaty of Common Defense in Washington, D.C., which entered into force on August 27, 1952, with unlimited validity.

Source: Global Times - Global Network. More exciting, please log on to the World Wide Web responsible editor: Yang Yi_NBJ10647