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RP, CHINA TO PUSH FORMATION OF ASIAN ANTI-TERROR ALLIANCE

The Philippines and China will form an anti-terror alliance, along with Russia, Indonesia, Malaysia and four former Soviet republics in Central Asia. “We must establish strong linkages to put an end to terrorism,” said Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. after meeting with Wu Bangguo, chairman of the standing committee of the National People’s Congress of China. The alliance will also include the Central Asian republics of Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, which comprise the Shanghai Cooperation Organization with Russia and China, he added. De Venecia said it has been established that the Southeast Asia-based Jemaah Islamiyah terrorist group has links with al-Qaeda, which operates in Central Asia. Wu said his talks with De Venecia covered “a lot of issues” on regional security and terrorism. The two officials said terrorists and weapons are being moved from Central Asia via Russia and China to Southeast Asia. The Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia must forge an agreement on cooperation with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, they added. Last year, the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia agreed to exchange intelligence information and training programs, and hold joint patrols on their common borders as part of their campaign against terrorism. Full Story

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