Phl-US Balikatan Exercise concludes
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - May 16, 2014 - 7:00pm

MANILA, Philippines (Xinhua) - The 12-day Balikatan Exercise between the Philippines and the United States officially concluded at the Camp Aguinaldo in Metro Manila today.

The closing ceremony was attended by high-ranking military officials from both sides including Philippine Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, DND Undersecretary Honorio Asqueta, Chief of Staff General of the Armed Foreces of the Philippines (AFP) Emmanuel Bautistar and US Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Brian Goldbeck.  

Around 3,000 Filipino soldiers and 2,500 American military personnel participated in this year's war games which kicked off on May 5.

The exercise, the first bilateral one carried out after the two countries signed the "Philippine-US Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA), put more emphasis on maritime security as officials from both sides stated on the opening ceremony.

Field training exercise included "Combined Arms Live-Fire Exercise", which included helicopter raid, mechanized raid and ground troop maneuvers and "amphibious operation", or "boat raid".

Philippine AFP Chief Emmanuel Bautista said at the closing rite that EDCA is setting up the cooperation and there are several activities under the mutual defense treaty.  He said Balikatan exercise will be even bigger next year.


 

BALIKATAN EXERCISE CAMP AGUINALDO CHIEF EMMANUEL BAUTISTA CHIEF OF STAFF GENERAL OF THE ARMED FORECES OF THE PHILIPPINES COMBINED ARMS LIVE-FIRE EXERCISE EMBASSY DEPUTY CHIEF OF MISSION BRIAN GOLDBECK EMMANUEL BAUTISTAR ENHANCED DEFENSE COOPERATION AGREEMENT METRO MANILA PHILIPPINE DEPARTMENT OF NATIONAL DEFENSE PHILIPPINES AND THE UNITED STATES
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