The training is being held simultaneously with the 7th Maritime Training Activity between the Philippine Navy and Royal Australian Navy.
Handout photo
Philippine, Australian troops train together in urban warfare
Roel Pareño (Philstar.com) - May 21, 2019 - 2:51pm

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — Australian and Philippine troops are training in urban warfare as part of greater defense cooperation between the two countries, which have already been holding maritime drills together.

The Philippines-Australia Army to Army Exercise 2019 formally opened Monday with troops of the 1st Infantry Division at Camp Sang-An in Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur.

The training is being held simultaneously with the 7th Maritime Training Activity between the Philippine Navy and Royal Australian Navy.
 
Brig. Gen. Roberto Ancan Jr., commander of the 1st Infantry Division, said the exercise aims to enhance combat skills and competence and develop interoperability between the Philippine Army and the Australian Defence Force.

"The training will provide opportunity to conduct combined mission planning and combined resolution of terrorist incident," Ancan said.

The 1st ID was tapped for the training because of the unit's experience fighting the Islamic State-inspired Maute and Abu Sayyaf group in the battle for Marawi City in 2017.  

The Australian Defence Force assisted the Philippines during the siege of Marawi by providing intelligence through two P-3 Orion surveillance planes.

Australia has sent 47 ADF personnel who will train with 540 troops from the 1st ID, including soldiers from the 11th and 15th Division Reconnaissance Companies, the 16th Scout Ranger Company, the 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade, the Combat Engineer Battalion, and the scout platoons of the division's battalions.

"The best gift that a commander can give to his men is training. Make the most out of it and apply it when the time comes," Ancan told his troops.

Australian Ambassador to the Philippine Steven Robinson said on Monday that his government is very keen in assisting the Philippines reduce the threat of terrorism and that Australian troops ready to share and learn from the experience of the Philippines.

PHILIPPINE ARMY PHILIPPINES-AUSTRALIA RELATIONS ZAMBOANGA CITY
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