June 6, 2022
MANILA — The Philippines and South Korea will hold a joint military exercise for the first time, the South Korean Ministry of Defense announced in Seoul on Friday.
The defense ministry made the announcement after bilateral military talks between South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
The ministry did not provide other details of the exercise, except that it will involve South Korean marines and will be held in October.
In its own statement, the Department of National Defense (DND) said that Lorenzana and Lee also exchanged views on the situations in the South China Sea and Korean Peninsula.
Both ministers reaffirmed that freedom of navigation and overflight as well as the respect for international law must be upheld at all times.
Lorenzana also reiterated the Philippines’ call for the “complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization” of North Korea, the same week the Department of Foreign Affairs condemned North Korea’s ballistic missile tests.
Lorenzana also thanked Lee for South Korea’s support to the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ military modernization program, the DND said.
As part of his official visit, Lorenzana also signed a memorandum of understanding with Park Min-shik of the Ministry of Patriot and Veterans Affairs, which will further deepen veterans’ cooperation between both countries. June is the month of patriots and veterans in South Korea.
Manila and Seoul’s security ties have flourished through the years after it was cemented by the Philippine deployment of troops during the Korean War in the 1950s.