WASHINGTON, August 22. /TASS/. The United States plans to strengthen its military presence in the Asia-Pacific region in the next years by deploying there more its ships and warplanes, a new Pentagon report has said.
The report titled "Asia-Pacific Maritime Security Strategy" said Washington will "maintain the necessary military presence and capabilities to protect U.S. interests and those of allies and partners against potential threats in maritime Asia."
David Shear, the assistant secretary of defense for Asian-Pacific security affairs, told a Pentagon news conference Friday that the US is strengthening its military capacity in the region to deter conflict and coercion and respond decisively when needed.
"The United States maintains 368,000 military personnel in the Asia-Pacific region," the report reads. "Over the next five years, the U.S. Navy will increase the number of ships assigned to Pacific Fleet outside of U.S. territory by approximately 30%, greatly improving our ability to maintain a more regular and persistent maritime presence in the Pacific. And by 2020, 60% of naval and overseas air assets will be home-ported in the Pacific region."
The report also mentions various territorial and maritime disputes in the South China and East China Seas, involving Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Japan. "The U.S. Government urges States to not implement unilateral actions that undermine regional stability and trust," it says.