Australia, Philippines discuss joint patrols in South China Sea

 – Australian Defense Minister Richard Marles said on Wednesday he discussed with his Philippine counterpart pursuing joint patrols in the disputed South China Sea.

Marles was speaking at a joint news conference with Philippines Defense Secretary Carlito Galvez after holding talks in Manila.

“As countries which are committed to the global rules-based order, it is natural that we should think about ways in which we can cooperate in this respect,” Marles said.

“We did talk today about the possibility of exploring joint patrols and we will continue that work and we hope that comes to fruition soon.”

The possibility of the Philippines and Australia holding joint patrols comes on the heels of similar discussions between Manila and Washington about conducting joint coast guard patrols, including in the South China Sea. – Reuters