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A request from the Philippines for a large coast guard ships to patrol the disputed West Philippine sea ( South China Sea) is now being considered by the Japanese government after the two allies have reached a deal on defense equipment and technology.

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In a bilateral meeting during the last day of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit on Thursday, November 19, Aquino said, referring to the agreement allowing transfer of military assets from Japan to the Philippines. “the Prime Minister and I reaffirmed the deepening of the Strategic Partnership. In fact, we have taken a significant step forward in enhancing our defense and security relations and I deeply thanked Japan for its unrelenting support to the Philippines.”

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said they are open to Aquino’s request to provide large patrol vessels to the Philippine Coast Guard, the main agency tasked to secure the almost 40,000-km coastline of the country.

“There was a request from President Benigno Aquino regarding the provision of large patrol vessels to the Philippine Coast Guard and Japan would like to consider the specifics,” Abe said in a statement.

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Also¬†“Japan wants a guarranty that any equipment it will give will not be transferred to a third country.”

The two nations signed a Declaration for a Strengthened Strategic Partnership and its Action Plan on June, which was strongly condemned by China. - Carl E.