PH, Russia defense officials meet: MOU on Defense Cooperation possible soon

DFA photo
DFA photo

Senior defense officials from the Philippines and Russia to discuss possible areas of defense and security cooperation between the two countries, the Department of Foreign Affairs said. The meeting was conducted April 26 in Moscow. The meeting was headed by Philippine Undersecretary for Defense Cooperation Natalio C. Ecarma III and Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Ivanovich Antonov.

They discussed the state of the proposed Philippine-Russia Memorandum of Understanding on Defense Cooperation and expressed the hope that this would be concluded soon.

The possibility of arranging a meeting sometime this year between defense officials from both countries who are responsible for these areas of cooperation. The purpose of the meeting would be to work out details of possible cooperation.

Both sides agreed that the current state of Philippine-Russia defense engagement should be improved, DFA said. The two defense officials discussed possible cooperation in the areas of military intelligence, education and training, as well as naval ship visits.

“I came away from our meeting with the clear sense that there is much that our defense establishments can do together in the cause of peace and security,” Ecarma said after the meeting. “Russia is an important world power and part of our region. We are very interested in pursuing pragmatic cooperation with the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation.”