The Philippine Navy’s (PN) corvette BRP Conrado Yap (PS39) conducted Passing Exercise (PASSEX) with two ships from the Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN) on the nearby waters of Manila, November 17.
ROKS Kang Gam-chan (DDH-979) and ROKS Soyang (AOE-51) compose the ROKN Cruise Training Task Group that annually travels around the world visiting various ports including Manila. With the prevailing pandemic, however, the ROKN opted for an at-sea exercise with the PN on their way to Malaysia in lieu of a port visit.
PS39 established communication with the two ROKN ships at around 10 o’clock in the morning followed by low altitude flyby accorded by two FA-50 fighter jets from the Philippine Air Force.
Part of the exercise was the transport of the South Korean-donated 10,000 pieces of face masks and 2,000 pieces of hand sanitizers to PS39 through rigid inflatable boats. The gesture was inspired by South Koreas deep appreciation of the Philippines for being the first Asian country to send troops in their support during the Korean War in 1950.
It was followed by the three ships tactical maneuvers and culminated with a farewell sail.
PASSEX is a customary undertaking to ensure that vessels and aircraft are able to communicate and cooperate with each other. It is also a form of rendering honors to transiting foreign naval vessels.
Moreover, said activity aimed to reaffirm the already strong ties between the Philippines and South Korea. ROKN has been among the key defense partners of the PN with their noteworthy contributions to the latter’s modernization journey. Most recent among these was the transfer of the former Pohang-class corvette, now BRP Conrado Yap to the PN. NAVY.MIL.PH