PM Gillard announces more US troops to use Australia

November 16, 2011 09:29


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CANBERRA - The United States will position more troops in northern Australia under a new bilateral military agreement that will eventually see 2,500 US forces in Australia, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said on Wednesday after talks with US President Barack Obama.

The agreement will not include a permanent US base in Australia, but will see more forces transit through Australia, offering closer access to the South China Sea than America's bases in Japan and South Korea.

Australia is a staunch US ally and Obama's trip is timed to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the ANZUS military alliance, which is the cornerstone of Australia's defense strategy.

Obama will address Australia's parliament on Thursday, where he will focus on the United States in the Asia-Pacific region.

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