Philippines, Australia hold joint anti-terror exercises Print
Monday, 04 June 2018 11:47

By ALLEN ABASTILLAS

The Philippine and Australian Navy personnel held joint anti-terror exercises in the seas off Zamboanga city to demonstrate improved capability in responding to terror attacks in the region.

The exercises, dubbed as the Philippine Navy Capability Demonstration Amphibious Demolition Raid Operations, were held at the Majini Wharf in Lower Calarian yesterday morning.

The exercises were held in partnership with two Australian Navy ships, the Her Majesty Australian Ship (HMAS) Glenelg and the HMAS Albany.

The scenario involved a possible attack on a private yacht by terrorists who were on board another boat, a situation which has occurred at least once in the region.

In the exercise, the alert crew of the yacht sends a distress signal to attract the attention of a Philippine Navy craft patrolling the area even before the terrorists were able to get near the yacht.

Immediately, the Naval Task Force 61 responds, and conducts search and combat operations to rescue the would-be victims.

Participating teams in the exercises are the following:  Special Naval Operations Units 1 and 6, Special Operations Platoon 11, Boat Attack 485, Seaborne Patrol Unit of Naval Station Romulo Espaldon and the HMAS Glenelg and HMAS Albany.

Col. Hernanie Songano, Deputy Commander for Marine Operations NAVFORWEM, said that similar exercises are done regularly by the Philippine Navy nationwide.

Exercises were also conducted in Sibuco, Sirawai, Siocon, Baliguian and the 11 Island group of Zamboanga City.

The two Australian Navy ships also held joint exercises in the Sulu and Tawi Tawi seas.

“Sine-share dito ng Australian Navy ang kanilang expertise sa training at exercises sa navigation.  Itong regular na activity ay pro-active ito at readiness ng Philippine Navy against terrorism and crimes committed in the high seas,” Songano pointed out.  (Allen Abastillas)