No. 2 US diplomat to meet with Marcos during Philippine visit

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 06 2022 11:10 AM

US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman. Photo from Sherman's official Twitter account
US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman. Photo from Sherman's official Twitter account

MANILA — Washington's No. 2 diplomat will visit the Philippines this month to discuss relations with President-elect Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr., the US Department of State said.

In a statement Friday, the department said that Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman will be coming to the country between June 5 and 14.

During her visit to Manila, she will meet with Marcos Jr., his aides, and senior officials of the outgoing Duterte administration "to discuss ways to deepen the bilateral US-Philippines Alliance."

"She will also participate in a business roundtable and an event in celebration of World Oceans Day," the statement read.

The Philippines is one of Sherman's stops in her June Asia visit. She is also scheduled to visit South Korea, Laos, and Vietnam.

Sherman will meet top officials of the said countries, including Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin, Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Mori Takeo, Laos Deputy Prime Minister Kikeo Khaykhamphithoune, and Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh and Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son.

"The Deputy Secretary's travel to the region reflects the United States' continued commitment to the Indo-Pacific and follows last month's US-ASEAN Special Summit, President Biden's visit to [South Korea] and Japan, the Quad Leaders' Summit in Tokyo, and the launch of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework," the department added.

 US President Biden earlier called Marcos Jr to congratulate him for his win in the May 9 polls. 

US Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Kritenbrink had said that Biden's call signifies the superpower's willingness to work with the incoming Marcos administration.

US Embassy Manila's Chargé d'affaires Heather Variava had also paid a courtesy call with Marcos Jr. Among the topics they discussed was the need to "redefine" the terms under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the United States and the Philippines.

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