Philippines, U.S. to hold joint naval drill with allies

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  • MANILA — The Philippines and the United States will hold a joint naval drill alongside their allies
    next month with over 2,000 personnel from several countries, including Japan, taking part, the
    Southeast Asian nation’s military said Wednesday.

    The 12-day exercise starting Monday will be held off the coasts of Sorsogon and Catanduanes
    provinces in Luzon amid mounting tension between China and the Philippines in the South China
    Sea.

    Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force will deploy its destroyer Akebono to train alongside Philippine
    Navy frigate Antonio Luna and two U.S. Navy vessels, the guided-missile destroyer Dewey and the
    cargo ship Wally Schirra. Naval ships from Canada and Britain will also take part, according to the
    Philippine Armed Forces.

    Some 170 Japanese personnel will join the exercise, alongside 240 from Australia. A handful of
    personnel from France, New Zealand and Indonesia will also participate.

    The Philippines’ armed forces said in a statement that the annual exercise will cover anti-submarine
    and anti-surface warfare, among other maneuvers.

    The MSDF has taken part in the drill, dubbed “Samasama,” in previous years.

    Last month, Japan sent its destroyers Izumo and Samidare to participate in a joint exercise with the
    United States, Australia, and the Philippines in the South China Sea. (abs-cbn)

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