Army, Marines to get new M4 rifles
Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - August 11, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Vietnam War-era rifles used by troops will be retired soon as the military is set to distribute new M4 rifles to the Army and the Marines on Tuesday.

Officials said the ceremonial distribution of rifles will jumpstart the modernization of the ground forces’ firepower capability.

President Aquino is expected to witness the event to be held at the Armed Forces General Headquarters canopy area in Camp Aguinaldo.

This was supposed to be held last July 14 but was postponed because the President had to prepare for his address on the Disbursement Acceleration Program, key portions of which were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Catapang Jr. are also expected to attend tomorrow’s ceremony.

The military will distribute 27,300 units of 5.56mm M4 rifles to the Army and Marines to boost their security operations.

The rifles will replace the antiquated M-16 and M-16A1 rifles of soldiers, a majority of which were used during the Vietnam War in the 1960s and the ’70s. The military admitted many of the rifles are “already in poor condition and need refurbishing or replacement.”

The rifles were delivered in two batches. The first batch of 100 rifles was delivered last July 5.

The firearms were delivered in advance because they were supposed to be used for the ceremonial turnover that was postponed.

The second batch of rifles arrived last July 31 and consisted of 27,200 units. The remaining 23,329 rifles are slated for December delivery.

ARMED FORCES GENERAL HEADQUARTERS ARMY AND MARINES ARMY AND THE MARINES CAMP AGUINALDO DEFENSE SECRETARY VOLTAIRE GAZMIN AND ARMED FORCES DISBURSEMENT ACCELERATION PROGRAM GREGORIO CATAPANG JR. PRESIDENT AQUINO RIFLES SUPREME COURT VIETNAM WAR
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