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Around 200 soldiers from the United States Army are expected to arrive in Palau for a military exercise that will run from April 14-19.

An article by Stars and Stripes said that the military exercise is part of its Pacific Pathways where about 50 Palauan personnel are going to participate in the training to be held mainly in Ngaremlengui State.

“The focus of these events is to increase U.S. Army presence, gain positional advantage and reassure U.S. security commitments while increasing the USARPAC presence in the region,” the army was quoted in the report.

The visiting troops that are part of the 18th Medical Command are also going to conduct a humanitarian outreach program in Palau’s outlying islands such as Peleliu and Angaur.

Palau is among the island nations that entered into Compact of Free Association agreement with the United States under which the latter is responsible for Palau’s military defense for 50 years.

The Pacific region is where big countries like the United States and China are vying for influence. (By Rhealyn C. Pojas)