Press and Photo Releases 2012
U.S. Embassy Statement on the 61st Anniversary of the Mutual Defense Treaty
Manila, August 30, 2012 - Today, we celebrate the 61st anniversary of the Mutual Defense Treaty, which provides the framework for our military cooperation and partnership. Our two countries both benefit today from our close relationship, as we focus our defense efforts on common interests. We continue to strengthen, and deepen our military alliance, cooperating together to help ensure the peace and security of the Asia Pacific region.
70 years ago, our soldiers fought valiantly together in the defense of our last strongholds at Corregidor and Bataan, and we continued our resistance until our armed forces was joined again on the beaches of Leyte in October 1944 to finalize the liberation of the Philippines.
Sixty-one years ago today, the United States’ and the Philippines’ signed a treaty borne out of an abiding friendship, that was forged by a history of shared sacrifice and common purpose.
Our partnership is today committed to sustaining global and regional peace, security, and prosperity.
Nine months ago, Secretary Clinton stood side-by-side with her Philippine counterpart Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario aboard the USS Fitzgerald in Manila Bay to sign the joint Manila Declaration, commemorating the 60th anniversary of the U.S.-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty. Together, these leaders reaffirmed our commitment to fulfill the vision of the Manila Declaration through an invigorated and expanded alliance, an alliance that is capable of addressing 21st century challenges.
The Mutual Defense Treaty remains the foundation of our bilateral relationship. The Manila Declaration set forth a shared vision for strategic, political, economic, and people-to-people cooperation between our two nations that will allow us to meet the many and diverse challenges of the 21st century
Throughout the post-World War II era, the Philippines has been an important strategic partner and ally for the United States. We laud Philippine successes against transnational terrorist groups in the Southern Philippines, and welcome Philippine leadership in areas such as non-proliferation. During bilateral military exercises, our armed forces work together to increase their interoperability, enhance capabilities through subject matter expert exchanges, and support local populations through community relations projects. The United States is also proud to be a close partner supporting Philippine disaster relief efforts during times of natural calamities.
The United States is strengthening our presence in Asia, given our national interest in the maintenance of peace and security in this region. This includes freedom of navigation and over flight, respect for international law, the rule of law, and unimpeded lawful commerce across the region's maritime domain.