U.S. military forces return to Phillippines in 10-year deal

Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes announced the 10-year deal – an Enhanced Defense Cooperation agreement — in a briefing with reporters today. He said the arrangement serves the national interest and underscores a “historic commitment to the Pacific.”

When it is signed ahead of President Obama’s arrival in Manila on Monday, it will broaden U.S. access to bases in the Philippines on a rotational, temporary basis, officials said. The deal will allow the Pentagon to move fighter jets and ships in the area, making the U.S. a more present and capable partner in the region.

The officials would not specify the exact numbers of troops or where or when they will arrive in the Philippines, saying those details are still under discussion.