5,000 Philippine, US troops to hold exercises in Palawan

us-philippines military exerciseClose to 5,000 troops from the Philippines and the United States will soon conduct another round of large-scale military exercises that will enhance their ability to respond jointly to regional issues, humanitarian disasters and maritime-security needs within the Asia-Pacific region.

Amphibious Landing Exercise (PHIBLEX 15) will be staged in Palawan and other parts of Luzon beginning Sept. 29 to Oct. 10.

Approximately 3,500 American troops based in Okinawa, Japan, and the US will be involved in this 31st staging of PHIBLEX .

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), on the other hand, is sending about 1,200 Marines, Navy, Army, and Air Force (PAF) personnel to join their US counterparts from the 3rd Marine Expeditionary Brigade (3rd MEB) and Commander, Task Force 76 (CTF 76) in this annual event.

As part of PHIBLEX 15, there will be a command post exercise to practice communications throughout the battle space, field training exercises that include small arms and artillery live-fire training, amphibious operations, ship-to-shore movement, combined arms training, civil-military operations, and humanitarian and civic assistance projects.

Capt. Craig Thomas, Military Public Affairs Liaison at the US Embassy, noted that one of the new training events for this year’s PHIBLEX is the command post exercise, “which focuses on command and control of all the different units involved in the mission.”

This should help increase the AFP’s capability to conduct planning and effective execution of bilateral maritime security and territorial defense operations.

The field training exercises, on the other hand, should provide the Philippine and US Marine units multiple opportunities to continue to improve their skills while sharing best practices and enhancing an already high level of cohesion.

Lt. Cdr. Marineth Domingo, Philippine Navy public affairs office (PAO) director, earlier said that actual training on amphibious operations will be conducted in Palawan.

Non-combatant evacuation operations (NEO) is slated at the Subic and Clark areas, while mechanized assault operation will be held in Zambales.

Additionally, Philippine and US forces will conduct a series of humanitarian and civic assistance projects to benefit the civilian communities near areas where the exercises will take place.

These benefits include free medical and dental treatment to local citizens while completing engineering and construction projects that will provide additional classrooms and other facilities to the community.

“Bilateral Philippine-US military training opportunities such as PHIBLEX 15 fortify our strong foundation of interoperability and enrich the relationship we have across a range of military operations – from disaster relief, to complex expeditionary maneuvers,” read a statement from the US embassy.

Read more: http://www.mb.com.ph/5000-philippine-us-troops-to-hold-exercises-in-palawan/

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