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Philippines boosting U.S., Japan security ties: foreign minister

Manila also must balance defense concerns with economic links to China

Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo speaks during an interview with Nikkei Asia in Tokyo. (Photo by Takuya Fujisawa)

TOKYO -- The Philippines is seeking to enhance security ties with the U.S. and Japan while treading carefully to maintain productive relations with China, a regional economic and military power, the Southeast Asian nation's foreign minister told Nikkei Asia.

Manila recently held its largest-ever military exercises with the U.S. and in February signed an agreement with Tokyo to simplify procedures for Japan's Self-Defense Forces to provide humanitarian assistance to the Philippines, raising the possibility of further expansion of military cooperation.

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