Arms deal with Russia eyed
THE Philippines may acquire military equipment and technology from Russia to boost its campaign against terrorism, transnational crimes and the threats to it in the disputed South China Sea, Foreign Affairs said Wednesday.
The department said officials from the Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation briefed the Philippine officials who visited Moscow on the different aspects of possible military cooperation between the Philippines and Russia, including the acquisition of Russian military equipment and technology.
The FSMTC is a federal agency under the Office of the President of the Russian Federation. It is responsible for control and oversight in the military-technical cooperation between the Russian Federation and foreign countries.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said the acquisition of modern military equipment and technology from Russia would ensure security at sea, carrying out rescue operations and the exchange of information and experience between the two countries.
“One of the most pressing challenges in the region is keeping a stable, predictable and peaceful maritime order, particularly in the South China Sea,” Yasay said.
China has rejected The Netherlands-based UN arbitration court’s ruling that its claim over most of the South China Sea has no basis.
Yasay said the Philippines recognizes the importance of the South China Sea “as one of the main arteries of global trade, adding the countries in the region navigate through its disputed waters.
“Therefore, we all have a legitimate stake in maintaining peace and security in the region through peaceful means and the rule of international law,” Yasay said in his speech.
Philippine Ambassador to Russia Carlo Sorreta and Defense officials met with Russian Chief of the First Department of Military Sergey Buganov and FSMTC officials in Moscow to explore possible military cooperation.