Philippines, Brunei to hold joint military exercises

10:54:00 PM
MANILA, -- The armies of the Philippines and Brunei are eyeing joint exercises and trainings to strengthen their cooperation and to improve their interoperability.

The matter was discussed during the meeting of Philippine Army chief Lt. Gen. Eduardo Año and Royal Brunei Land Forces (RBLF) commander Brig. Gen. Pengiran Dato Paduka Aminan on Thursday in Fort Bonifacio.

Año said a bilateral working group can be formed to facilitate the conduct of visits, training exchanges, joint military exercises and other similar activities.

“I believe that as we put in place an Army to Army Working Group, our forces can examine our common capabilities as well as concerns, and eventually promote Philippines-Brunei bilateral defense ties,” Año said.

“I am certain that the RBLF has much to share with the Philippine Army in terms of capability upgrades, especially after your successful initiatives in enhancing force capabilities and defense policies,” he added.

Aminan is hopeful that the security ties between the two countries would continue.

“I would like to express my commitment in making sure that we continue our close relationship with your Army and hopefully in moving it closer in the years to come,” he said.

Army spokesman Col. Benjamin Hao said the two military officials did not discuss the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) dispute during their meeting. Both the Philippines and Brunei are claimants in the territorial row along with China, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan.

Año and Aminan also compared notes about their units’ best practices and their respective transformation programs.

The Philippine Army described the visit as “a very opportune engagement to further reinforce the partnership and camaraderie between the two forces in working together towards regional and global stability.”

“The visit of Royal Brunei Land Forces to Headquarters Philippine Army served as venues to foster good relations through defense diplomacy as the Philippine Army continuously pursue its international engagements efforts,” Hao said.

Aminan and his party arrived in Manila last Wednesday for a two-day visit that seeks to enhance the security ties between the Philippines and Brunei.

The Philippine Army Soldiers exit a grounded training helicopter during helicopter insert and extract training on Fort Magsaysay, Philippines.

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