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The Philippines Walks a Tricky Line Between the Superpowers

The top defense and diplomatic officials from the United States and the Philippines met in Washington, D.C. for the 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue Plenary Session on Promoting Regional Security on April 11, 2023. ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP

China has rejected a joint call by the Philippines and the United States to scale back its presence in the South China Sea.

This follows Tuesday’s 2+2 talks between U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Enrique Manalo and Carlito Galvez, the Senior Undersecretary of Defense.

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