Australian PM seeks Aquino's advice on anti-terrorism drive

AUSTRALIAN Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull sought Wednesday advice from President Benigno Aquino III on the fight against terrorism.

The two leaders met at the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Leaders' Summit in Manila.

"We are also very appreciative of the advice that you have given us in terms of the global struggle against terrorism," Turnbull said in a press statement following the bilateral meeting.

"The Philippines is no stranger to violent extremism and your government has been—and your predecessors’ governments have been very strong in their defense of the civil order. And I thought your views on the radicalization were particularly informative and very helpful to us as we consider our responses in Australia," he added.

The Philippines has been fighting the terrorist Abu Sayyaf in Mindanao for several years already.

The two countries also signed a joint declaration on comprehensive partnership and the memorandum of understanding on cooperation in technical and vocational education and training.

Aquino said the Philippines and Australia have been partners in peace, stability and progress for almost 70 years now.

The President said he and his Australian counterpart committed to continue working closely towards more substantive and meaningful activities between the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Australian Defense Force to build trust and confidence and enhance interoperability. (SDR/Sunnex)

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