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Vanuatu aidThe United States is on a mission to woo the countries of the south west Pacific,after pretty much checking out of the region at the end of the 1980s.

Since declaring 2007 "the Year of the Pacific" the United States has been stepping up its presence and this year The Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, made no bones of the fact that China's stronger foothold is the reason.

The United States is checking back in with exercises like its annual military-led aid mission, Pacific Partnership, which this year included New Zealand on a much bigger scale.

Sally Round travelled to Espiritu Santo in Vanuatu and asks what the locals think of all the increased attention.



View a gallery of images from the US military led Pacific Partnership mission to Espiritu Santo in Vanuatu.