Chun Han Wong
Wall Street Journal
November 16, 2012

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said the U.S. will increase its military cooperation with Southeast Asian nations, part of what he called a long-term shift of the American security presence in the Asia-Pacific, where China has stepped up its military assertiveness.

Mr. Panetta spoke Friday in Cambodia at a briefing for reporters following discussions with his counterparts from the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, ahead of a series of summit meetings starting Sunday that will include regional leaders, and U.S. President Barack Obama and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.

“As a reflection of [our] commitment, the United States will increase the size and number of exercises that we participate in, in the Pacific, with our Southeast Asia partners, and we are devoting new funding to this goal,” Mr. Panetta said.

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