Philippines Increases Military Presence on Northern Islands


Batanes Islands (Credit Google Earth)
Batanes Islands: (Credit Google Earth)

On March 10, Inquirer.Net reported that over 100 residents of the Batanes Islands joined the reservist forces of the Philippine Navy. 

Vice Admiral Toribio Adaci Junior, the Philippine Navy Chief remarked that the new reservists would be key to creating a “secure and safe environment” in and around the country’s “last and northernmost frontier” according to Inquirer.Net.

This follows the construction and upgrading of Philippine Armed Forces outposts and bases in the Batanes, as well as the expansion of the Enhanced Defensive Cooperation Agreement between the US and the Philippines from five joint bases to nine across the Philippines as a whole. 

The Philippines has also recently purchased BrahMos Supersonic Cruise Missiles from India, some of which are likely to be placed on Basco Island, in the Batanes, according to Defence Security Asia. These missiles have a range of 900 kilometers (559 miles).

Tensions between China and the Philippines are at an all-time high and show no signs of lowering.