Manila: US President Barack Obama on Tuesday offered the Philippines a warship as part of a $250-million aid package to Southeast Asian allies worried about Chinese efforts to control the South China Sea.
Obama made the pledges aboard the Philippine Navy’s flagship, shortly after arriving in Manila for a summit of Asia-Pacific leaders to also be attended by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
“My visit here underscores our shared commitment to the security of the waters of this region and to the freedom of navigation,” Obama said. The offers were aimed at reassuring allies that the United States was committed to maintaining security in the region’s waters, following Chinese artificial island building in parts of the South China Sea.
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