Philippine and US armies stress importance of military cooperation

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Philippine Army Commanding General and US Army Chief of Staff stressed the importance of military cooperation in a bilateral meeting during the 11th Indo-Pacific Army Chiefs’ Conference in Bangkok, Thailand, Sept. 10, 2019.

Lt. Gen. Macairog S. Alberto, Commanding General of the Philippine Army, met with Gen. James C. Mconville, US Army Chief of Staff. Alberto shared the PA’s concern with the Communist Terrorist Movement, the Abu Sayyaf Group, and the issue of the West Philippine Sea. They further discussed the planned exercises between the PA and US Army Pacific Command such as the Salaknib which is proposed to include an airborne exercise on its next iteration.

Another highlight of the talk was the fill-up of the PA’s second Brigade Combat Team and the PA’s force expansion through the Reserve Force Development.

Currently, the PA’s First Brigade Combat Team (1BCT) is deployed in Sulu to aid in the fight against terrorism. Before the 1BCT was assigned in the said area, its members have undergone training with the USARPAC through SALAKNIB and BALIKATAN this year. Said exercises were designed to prepare the brigade on counter terrorism.

“The Philippine Army and the US Army’s cooperation has remained strong for years. Our training exchanges and military exercises with them have helped in capability development as well as in the skill enhancement of our troops. We will maintain this good relationship with them alongside our cooperation with other armies in the Indo-Pacific region. This enables us to ensure the peace and security of our people,” said Lt. Col. Ramon P. Zagala, PA spokesperson. PHILIPPINE ARMY