28 Jul 2010

US says Guam troop build-up is key to region's security

9:38 pm on 28 July 2010

The US deputy defence secretary says the realignment of forces on Guam is key to maintaining an effective U.S. presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

The shift of 8,000 troops to Guam is set to occur by 2014 and expected to involve some 9,000 dependents.

American Forces Press Service reports William Lynn has made his first visit to Guam to speak with Government leaders and residents about the upcoming troop movement, and to see the island's infrastructure.

He says the US needs the right mix of forces to address the changing security situation in the wider region.

Deputy Secretary Lynn says as the westernmost U.S. territory in the Pacific, Guam is set in a region of increasing global importance.

He also acknowledged that reconfiguring the military presence on Guam will be a long-term process.