MANILA, Jan 24 (Mabuhay) — This year’s “Salaknib” exercises between Filipino and American military units is slated March 5-24.

The participants are troops from the Philippine Army’s (PA) 1st Brigade Combat Team, Training and Doctrine Command, Army Support Command, 51st Engineer Brigade, Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Army Artillery Regiment, Aviation Regiment, Armor Division, Light Reaction Regiment, Special Forces Regiment, and First Scout Ranger Regiment and their counterparts from United States Army Pacific Command (USARPAC).

“Salaknib, which means shield in Ilocano, is a testament to our enduring ties with the US Army. It is anchored on the Philippine-US Mutual Defense Treaty and has been ongoing since 2015,” PA commander, Lt. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. said in a statement Sunday.

“Salaknib” is an annual exercise sponsored by USARPAC and hosted by the PA. It aims to enhance the defense readiness of both Filipino and American troops by developing tactical interoperability and at the same time, showcase the US government’s resolve to fulfill its alliance obligations in the region.

Last January 21, the PA and USARPAC teams completed the three-day inspection of the proposed training sites in Central Luzon to ensure availability, suitability, and training-worthiness.

Brawner commended the “Salaknib” planning team for carrying out a thorough planning process aimed at ensuring the success of the bilateral exercise even amidst the pandemic.

“The conduct of combined training exercises between the Philippine and US armies will capacitate us in effectively dealing with the fast-changing security landscape of the Indo-Pacific region,” Brawner said. (MNS)

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