The United States has expressed condolences over the death of former Philippine President Benigno Aquino III, recalling his effort in enhancing the “partnership” between the two countries.
The message of sympathies was relayed by US Chargé d’Affaires John Law through a post on Twitter Thursday.
Aquino, the 15th President of the Philippines, died Thursday at 61 after being rushed to the hospital. He was reportedly battling kidney and lung ailments.
“On behalf of the U.S. Embassy, I offer our deepest condolences to former President Benigno Aquino III’s family and loved ones at this heartbreaking time,” Law tweeted Thursday.
“We are saddened by President Aquino’s passing and will always be thankful for our partnership,” he added.
During his presidency, Aquino pursued the country’s closer relations with the United States on trade, investments, security, and other concerns. His administration also inked the country’s Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) with the United States that allows the rotational presence of American soldiers in certain local military camps in the country.
Then President Barack Obama, when he visited Manila in 2015, said the United States, as a treaty ally, has “a rock solid commitment to the defense of the Philippines.” He recognized Aquino as a “valuable and trusted friend of the United States.”