Amphibious landing drill highlights Balikatan
The Philippine military emphasized the importance of a amphibious landing exercise conducted in Zambales on Thursday as part of this year's Balikatan between American and Filipino soldiers.
Lt. Cmdr. Liezl Vidallon, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Balikatan 2019 Public Information Officer said the training will give the Philippine Marines a chance to use amphibious assault vehicles ( AAV) from United States.
Vidallion said the training will be useful as the Philippine Marines are set to get its first amphibious assault vehicles from South Korea next month.
"For today they will be using 11 AAVs from the US, so it's a good opportunity for our Philippine Marine Corps because we will be acquiring AAVs from South Korea," she said.
"From these exercises, the Philippine Marine Corps will try to learn the best practices, tactics and procedures being used by the US Marines, which we can apply when our AAVs arrive. It's a very good opportunity to learn together to work together," she added.
Vidallon said amphibious landing exercises at the Naval Education Training and Doctrines Command in San Antonio, Zambales was participated by around 160 Americans and 50 Philippine soldiers.
The Balikatan 2019, which started on April 1 will last until April 12.
Last Wednesday, the US and Philippine forces also conducted Combined Arms Live Fire Exercise (Calfex) at Colonel Ernesto Ravina Air Base in Crow Valley, Tarlac.
In a press release the Balikatan Information Bureau said "Calfex featured the careful orchestration of combined and joint ground and air elements to seize an objective."
"Prior to the live-fire execution, Philippine and US Army, Marine Corps and Air Force troops spent many days rehearsing to coordinate the success of the mission," it stated.
US Army Col. Leo Wyszynski, 1-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team commander said the "service members from across the Philippine and US militaries came together using their ground maneuver, artillery, mortars and air elements to successfully execute this complex live fire event."
“Throughout the exercise, from planning to execution, we've shared tactics and techniques that will allow us better operate together to ensure regional stability," he added. Robina Asido/DMS