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Philippines extends Visiting Forces Agreement with US for 6 months

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The Philippines has suspended for the second time its decision to scrap a two-decade-old Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) with the United States, its foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delaying the cancellation by another six months would “enable us to find a more enhanced, mutually beneficial, mutually agreeable, and more effective and lasting arrangement on how to move forward in our mutual defense,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

The Philippines is a treaty ally of the United States with several military agreements dependent on the VFA. Duterte last year notified Washington he was canceling the deal, which came amid outrage over a senator and ally being denied a US visa.