Monday, October 18, 2010

Navy, Air Force troops to take part in bilateral exercises

By Alexis Romero
The Philippine Star, Friday, 8 October 2010

MANILA, Philippines - Troops from the Navy and the Air Force will participate in annual bilateral exercises with more than 3,000 of their US counterparts this month.

Navy spokesman Lt. Col. Edgard Arevalo said some 1,000 troops from the Philippine Fleet and Marines would train with personnel from the US Navy and US Marines for the Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) and PHIBLEX (Amphibious Landing Exercise).

On the other hand, Air Force spokesman Lt. Col. Miguel Okol said in a radio interview that they would send a contingent for Talon Vision 2010, an integrated training exercise usually held side by side with PHIBLEX.

“Sailors and Marines of the Philippine Navy stand to benefit militarily in a nine-day training while civilians from Central Luzon stand to gain in humanitarian assistance and development projects,” Arevalo said in a statement.

“We will provide the air component for the exercise. Our troops will learn a lot from this. But our US counterparts will also get an insight on how we do our operations,” Okol told radio station dzRH.

Arevalo said six US Navy vessels and three aircraft would take part in the event.

CARAT will start on Oct. 13 at Subic Bay in Zambales and will end on Oct. 22. It will be composed of “in-port” and “at-sea” training activities.

“In-port” exercises include subject matter expert exchanges and community service activities like medical missions and engineering civic action.

On the other hand, “at-sea” events include visits, board, search, and seizure procedure, maritime interdiction operations, surveillance, and naval gunfire support.

Meanwhile, PHIBLEX will involve American and Filipino Marines and amphibious vehicles.

PHIBLEX activities will include a boat raid exercise at the Marine Base in Ternate, Cavite and a mechanized raid at the Naval Education and Training Command in Zambales.

PHIBLEX will start on Oct. 14 in Clark, Pampanga and will end on Oct. 22 at the Philippine Marine Corps headquarters in Taguig City.

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