Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Balikatan Exercise 2013

The Armed Forces of the Philippines Tuesday said maritime table-top exercises will highlight the 13-day "Balikatan Exercise 2013" starting April 5.

The multi-national maritime TTX aims to determine specific humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations in high-traffic international waters, and build response confidence among partners.

This is among the several activities which will be conducted during "Balikatan Exercise 2013".

The 29th of its series, the activity will be participated in by more than 8,000 members of the AFP and US military.

It will also enjoin personnel and representatives from other partner nations in the region.

Aside from the multinational maritime TTX, members of the Philippine and US armed forces will also undertake joint humanitarian assistance projects in communities in Zambales.

Preliminary work on community infrastructure projects will begin mid-March, Philippine military officials said.

Military medical personnel will offer free medical, dental and veterinary care.

In selected communities, military engineers will construct and repair schools and other infrastructure.

Additionally, Armed Forces personnel from both countries will conduct combined staff exercises and field training in Camp O'Donnell, Crow Valley, Subic Bay and Fort Magsaysay to improve inter-operability and contingency planning.

This year's "Balikatan" is the fourth HA/DR focused bilateral exercise, the 1st in 2008, the 2nd in 2010, and the third last year.

The annual military exercise is a combined joint military exercise based on the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty.

This is conducted every year to serve as a venue for joint and combined training between the Philippine and United States militaries.

The exercise is designed to enhance the AFP and the US military in capability development in the conduct of both traditional military training and civil military projects focusing on reaching out towards communities that need priority.

The HA/DR-focused "Balikatan 2013" seeks to address previous disaster situations that occurred recently in the Philippines with the objectives of supporting the Government with the development of regional disaster management and emergency response mechanisms.

It is also aimed at testing and validating the PH-US military HA/DR concept of operations in a multinational and multi-organizational exercise.

No comments: