TWGs to scrutinize Russian military equipment

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will be deploying various technical working groups (TWGs) to look into the military equipment being offered by Russia.

This was bared by Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in an interview with reporters Monday.

He added that these TWGs will look into the Mil-Mi-17 “Hip” medium helicopter, Kilo-class diesel-electric submarine and other equipment being offered by Russia to the Philippines.

Lorenzana said he had a look of the above-mentioned helicopter and other equipment during an exhibition he attended as part of his visit to Moscow last week.

“We will send the Army (TWG) there to look at (Russian Army equipment), pati yung (including) helicopters. Siguro (Maybe), we will send the TWG of the Air Force, yun namang sa (as for the) submarine, eh pupunta rin dun yung ating TWG ng Navy (the Navy’s TWG will come to look into it),” he added.

Despite the planned deployment of TWGs, the DND chief said that they are still looking for equipment that will be fit for the AFP’s use and within the agency’s budget.

Earlier, the DND chief said Russia is willing to provide advanced versions of its Kilo-class submarines to the Philippines through “soft loans” but clarified that the country is still looking for other sources.

Kilo-class submarines have a surface displacement of 2,350 tons, a length of 73.8 meters and capable of speeds up 17 to 20 knots and can be armed with a variety of torpedoes, missiles and naval mines. It has a cruising range of around 6,000 to 7,500 nautical miles.