Monday, July 20, 2015

US Forces' surveillance mission in West PH Sea to bolster information sharing

Photo courtesy of US Pacific Fleet
U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander Admiral Scott Swift led the 7-hour maritime surveillance mission of the US forces in the West Philippine Sea on Saturday.

According to the US Pacific Fleet website, the mission was conducted to evaluate the full capacity of P-8A Poseidon aircraft. Part of the mission was to fulfill the US Pacific Fleet's commitment of monitoring and ensuring the security situation in the region.

Photo courtesy of US Pacific Fleet
Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines said though the fleet is free to conduct surveillance in areas declared as part of international waters and airspace, AFP Chief Lt. Gen. Hernando Iiriberri was aware of the mission.

AFP Public Affairs Office Chief Lt. Col. Noel Detoyato added that the surveillance mission will bolster information sharing as the country faces maritime dispute with China on the West Philippine Sea.

"We have this information sharing on what they are going to observe".  said Lt. Col. Detoyato

Detoyato also added the US  forces' mission is America’s expression of support to the Philippines’ claims on the issue. AFP also believes the said mission will not hype the tension in the region.

Photo courtesy of SSg Amable Milay PAFPAO,AFP
Detoyato said that America also gives equal importance to its diplomatic relations with China.

Before the surveillance mission, US Pacific Commander Admiral Scott Swift visited the country to emphasize the alliance of the Philippines and America.

"He even emphasized during his call to the Chief of Staff that he even made sure that the Philippines is the first country that he visits to emphasize the US and Philippine relationship". said the AFP-PAO Chief

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