Friday, June 25, 2010

Marines Capture Enemy Camp In Sulu; Leave 2 Enemies Dead in Encounter

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

24 June 2010

As the term of the outgoing Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines Her Excellency Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ends Wednesday, 30 June, the skirmishes between government security forces and suspected renegade Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) joined by terrorist Abu Sayaf Group (ASG) members continue to rage in Sulu. At least two dead bodies of ASG members were recovered while four Marines from Marine Batallion Landing Teams 3 and 11 all of 2nd Marine Brigade were wounded during two tactical engagements between government forces under Joint Task Force Comet Commanding General BGen Rustico Guererro and the MNLF Group under Khabir Malik and the ASG under Yasser Igasan in 22 June 2010. Government forces regained the command and control facility of the lawless groups in Brgy Tuyang, Talipao, Sulu and a satellite camp also in Talipao. Two rifles—an M-14 and a Garand – and assorted ammunition were also recovered.

In his report to the Flag Officer in Command of the Philippine Navy RAdm Danilo Cortez, Bgen Guerrero declares that the operation was triggered by some combined partisan armed groups of MNLF and ASG disrupting the government’s development projects in southern Talipao. Helpless civilians, tired of the atrocities of the lawless groups, reported to the Marines that Malik and his cohorts have been impairing humanitarian missions in Talipao and Maimbung. On 15 May 2010, Malik’s group harassed the joint team of LGU officials and 2nd Marine Brigade who were assessing the socio-economic condition in southern Talipao and surveying the projected farm to market road that would link the isolated areas in Talipao and Maimbung.

BGen Rustico Guerrero, Commander of JTF Comet said emphatically that “we cannot afford to delay progress that is already long overdue. The standpoint of these lawless elements in resisting government-initiated socio-economic and humanitarian projects is anti-people and counter-progressive. Unless we will remove this disruptions from the equation, hope for peace and development in Sulu is futile”.

The military operations resulted to two major encounters. The first occurring at 10 a.m. in Brgy Mahala when Marines from MBLT-3 intercepted the evading heavily armed lawless elements under Malik and Jakari from Tuyang. The second encounter happened late in the afternoon when Marines from MBLT-11 chanced upon the reported encampment of combined forces of rogue MNLF under Nidzmi Jabar, Maas Ejan, and Jahid Susukan, and the ASG under Igasan in Talipao Proper, who were poised to block road development projects in southern Talipao.

COL Romeo Tanalgo, the Commander of the 2nd Marine Brigade for his part said that “as long as the group of Malik and Igasan roams in Southern Talipao, progress in the area will never set in. The quest for development for the people of Sulu has necessitated the conduct of these surgical, intelligence-driven military operations against these lawless elements.”

The Navy continues Fleet-Marine operations to flush the lawless groups from Sulu and also in Basilan and to decimate the dwindling number of the terrorist and bandit groups even as it intensified coordination with the local government on the other hand to address all fronts causing the continuing spate of atrocities in the island provinces. Unless the root causes of this lawlessness can be appropriately addressed, lasting peace, progress, and development in the region shall remain elusive.

Navy Honors Defense Sec Today

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

23 June 2010

The Philippine Navy rendered a Testimonial Parade and Review at 8 this morning, 23 June 2010 for outgoing Defense Secretary, Hon Norberto B Gonzales, at the Naval Station Jose Francisco, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. More than just a tradition, the gesture manifests the Navy’s homage to the Defense Chief who staunchly supports Navy modernization and its advocacy of a strong and credible navy in the service of our maritime nation.

Rear Admiral Danilo M Cortez, Acting Flag Officer In Command, Philippine Navy thanked the Defense Secretary for his legacy of making professional Sailors and Marines under his stint at the defense establishment. Calling Sec Gonzales a patriot, RADM Cortez cited the outgoing Secretary’s contribution to nation building giving particular attention to environmental protection. He later presented the memento to Sec Gonzales, a miniature Lantaka in a glass case. The Lantaka or the swivel cannons are the weapons mounted on Lakan’s ships called Caracoas during the battle against the Spaniards. These cannons were also commissioned by Rajah Sulayman on the fortification of Manila. Years later, Lantakas were used by Moros against the US troops during the Moro rebellion.

In his speech, Sec Gonzales declared that the AFP is the most stable institution that the country has today. That being so, the Philippine Navy in particular should make a bold stand and make its presence felt in the life of the nation. He also exhorted the soldiers to remain united, solid, and loyal to the Constitution. Sec Gonzales added that the AFP today occupies a bigger role in the society to help people who are in need. The AFP, particularly the Sailors and Marines have endeared itself to Filipinos by giving a helping hand in times of need, wherever help is needed.

“Climate change brings challenges today that not even scientists are sure of. We need an organization or institution that will be prepared when disasters strike, anywhere and anytime. With no other institution in the country today capable as the AFP, you have to be there for the people. To hold their hands and give assistance”.

The Defense Secretary also gave his assurance to the members of the Navy and other officers present from the Army and Air Force of his support to the AFP: “You have many friends in all corners of the society. We will be standing behind you. We will be there”.


Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

WHO: Honorable Norberto B Gonzales, Secretary of National Defense

WHAT: Testimonial Parade and Review

WHEN: 23 June 2010 @ 8 a.m.

WHERE: Naval Station Jose Francisco Parade Ground, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City


The Philippine Navy renders Testimonial Parade and Review in honor of Outgoing Secretary of the Department of National Defense Hon Norberto B Gonzales on 23 June 2010 at eight o’clock in the morning. More than just a tradition, the Philippine Navy in so doing manifests its homage to the Defense Chief who staunchly supports Navy modernization and its advocacy of a strong and credible navy in the service of our maritime nation.

Friends from the media are invited to cover the said event. Interested parties may coordinate with LCDR ARNOLD MARIE N OBRA PN at mobile telephone number 0917-258-62-47 for transportation arrangements and other details. A 25-seater Rosa Bus will be available and will be prepositioned on or about 6:30 a.m. beside the AFP Public Affairs Office, Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo to depart 6:45 a.m. for the Philippine Marine Corps Headquarters. The passengers will be ferried back to Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo after the activity.

Navy Far Ahead in Terms of Good Governance

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

“The Navy is modernizing; it is sailing very fast towards becoming a strong and credible that our maritime nation can be truly proud of. Because of my work in the Institute for Solidarity in Asia and for the Office of the President, I can tell you that the Navy is the most advanced in pursuit of good governance. The Navy is very far ahead,” a well-known and highly respected statesman said during a governance forum in the Philippine Navy (PN) Friday, 18 June 2010 at the Philippine Navy Officers Club, Naval Station Jose Francisco, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.

Dr. Jesus P. Estanislao is a Laureate Awardee of the international corporate governance network and a recipient of the 1992 Philippine Legion of Honor. In his capacity as Chair of Institute for Solidarity, he took occasion to make said declaration during the 5th Leg of the PN Governance Forum Series of 2010. And true to its commitment to excellence through good governance, the Navy invited Mr. David Michael V Padua, the Director of the Naga College Foundation’s Typhoon Preparedness Center.

During his talk, Mr. Padua who has earned the reputation as Typhoon specialist shared his insights, experience, and expertise on the topic “Typhoon Preparedness in Disaster Risk Governance”. He explained how he employed Typhoon 2000, the first web portal for tropical cyclones in the Philippines that he developed, in propagating information about typhoon information. He lectured “Typhoon 101” to deal on the basics of typhoons – their nature, behavior, characteristics, and how the mastery of these can save or mitigate loss of lives and destruction to properties.

The lecture was broadcast live to all six (6) naval forces in the country from Luzon to Mindanao via the Virtual Private Network – Video Tele-Conferencing (VPN-VTC). This is a telecommunication technology which allows two or more naval sites to interact via two—way video and audio transmissions simultaneously in real time. The VPN-VTC also allowed officers and personnel from said units to interact with the speaker.

This was the first time that the PN Governance Forum and a big gathering in the Navy employed this breakthrough video teleconferencing for the Team Navy. This same capability shall empower the Navy to deal with and respond to calls during disasters and calamities. Disaster response task units from the different naval forces will be aided with real time information of the emergencies as they evolve and deal with them accordingly.

SND leads Navy’s Mangrove Reforestation Project

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

Honorable Norberto B. Gonzales, Secretary of National Defense is expected to participate in the coastal clean-up and mangrove propagules planting of the Philippine Navy (PN) at Sitio Pulo, Barangay Tanza, Navotas City on Monday, June 28, 2010 at 7 a.m. The defense secretary had desired that the PN takes an active role in coastal resource management and climate change adaptation and mitigation.

The mangrove reforestation project is one of the efforts of the Philippine Navy in mitigating the effects of typhoons which have increased in intensity brought about by climate change. Mangroves help mitigate the effect of typhoon surge by preventing the rush of rising waves inland. It also helps prevent the siltation of bays, erosion of coastal areas, and serves as a habitat for small marine animals.

The Philippine Navy started on February 06, 2010 the mangrove reforestation effort dubbed as “Bakawanan 2010”. Navy personnel and local volunteers of the coastal areas of Sitio Pulo, Barangay Tanza, Navotas City, Barangay Ligtong, Rosario, Cavite and Barangay San Rafael IV, Noveleta, Cavite participated in cleaning the shores and planting mangrove propagules. The coastal area of Barangay Tanza, Navotas is a flood prone area and was one of those areas that were gravely affected by wrath of typhoons “Ondoy” and “Pepeng” last September.

Half of the 2,500 mangrove propagules planted in Barangay Tanza, Navotas City last January were able to survive, said Major Rocky C. Rosaria PN(M) of the Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Civil Military Operations, Headquarters Philippine Navy. Based on his observation during his recent survey of the coastal area, the mortality rate can be attributed to garbage accumulation at the shore.

The environmental activity will have three phases. Phase one consists of symposium and lectures about the importance of Solid Waste Management and Mangrove reforestation in protecting the environment from June 21 to 27 June, 2010 with the residents of Barangay Tanza. Phase two will be a clean-up of the shore of Sitio Pulo and the planting of 3,000 propagules. Phase three involves creating a group from the residents, local government and 1st Civil Military Operations Group Company that will monitor and sustain the mangroves.

The continuing mangrove reforestation project of the Philippine Navy forms part of the commitment towards coastal resource management and climate change adaptation and mitigation. It also supplements the Disaster Preparedness and Risk Management that the Command is advocating.

Anti-Terror Exercise Commences Today in RP, Singapore

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

The Exercise Southeast Asia Cooperation Against Terrorism (SEACAT) 2010 begins today, 18 June 2010 at 9 a.m. as Philippine Navy officers and personnel manned the communications equipment at the PN Headquarters in Manila and Changi Command and Control (C2) Center in Singapore. Over the next few days until the 24th, these personnel will be tracking the movement of participating air and surface assets of the US and Philippine navies as they undertake series of events aimed at enhancing their operability in combating terrorism and transnational crimes in the high seas.

For the first time since it began participating in military exercises with foreign armed forces, the Philippine Navy will employ its Virtual Private Network (VPN) in communicating and interacting with its foreign counterparts in Singapore. The VPN will pave the way for an efficient and better than before information exchange and link-up among the Philippine, Singaporean, and US Navies.

Beginning the 21st, US assets USNS Safeguard, USS Mellon (US Coast Guard vessel), and P-3 Orion will be entering the Philippines via Palawan and sail to Mindanao where participating air and surface assets of Naval Forces Western and Eastern Mindanao will engage USNS Safeguard, the designated target vessel in scenarios such as the Visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS) and Maritime Interdiction Operation (MIO). These activities focus on information exchange, coordinated surveillance operations, locating, tracking, and intercepting enemies that allow participating navies to employ appropriate measures in dealing with terrorists, pirates, and other lawless elements at sea during real-life situations. Teams from the Naval Special Operations Group (NAVSOG) and the Coast Watch Stations will also be employed during the Exercise.

By undertaking the exercise, participating navies are exposed to techniques useful to combat maritime threats and fight lawless elements operating in the high seas. Exercise SEACAT enhances the navies’s cooperation and coordination in support of a cohesive response to terrorism, transnational crimes, and crimes in the high seas. The Exercise also contributes to ASEAN’s efforts in building peace and security in the region that has taken strong stance against terrorism and has remained vigilant in safeguarding its maritime territory from pirates, smugglers, and other criminal elements.

Statement from the Director, Naval Public Affairs Office RE- Rescued Kidnap Victim in Zamboanga City

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

1. Based from the information furnished to the Navy Headquarters by Rear Admiral Alexander Pama, Commander of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NFWM) and JTF Trillium, Mr Charlie Reith was rescued this morning at 3 a.m. after more than two months in the hands of his suspected kidnappers.

2. The rescuers were members of the PNP backed by the Navy Special Operations Team and crew of BRP General Mariano Alvarez (PS38) from the NFWM. The kidnap victim is now in the company of his family after undergoing medical check-up immediately after his rescue from the clutches of his abductors.

3. The successful rescue operations that caught the abductors by surprise is the fruit of an extensive intelligence build-up by the PNP and Philippine Navy.

4. Although follow-up operations are ongoing, this is a welcome development as the personnel involved here can augment other forces pursuing the abductors of other kidnap victims who were murdered in Basilan.

Philippine Navy schedules 5th Leg of Leadership Governance Forum

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

With the advent of the rainy season the Philippine Navy has gone a long way in preparing for any possible unforeseen calamities. With this the Command had scheduled the conduct of the 5th Leg of the Philippine Navy Governance Forum Series 2010, to be held this Friday, June 18, 2010 at eight thirty in the morning at the Philippine Navy Officers Club, Main Dining Hall, Naval Station Jose Francisco, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.

The Philippine Navy invited Mr. David Michael V Padua, Director of the Naga College Foundation’s Typhoon Preparedness Center to share his insights, experience, and expertise on the topic “Typhoon Preparedness In Disaster Risk Governance”. Mr. Padua is a typhoon specialist and the developer of Typhoon 2000, the first web portal for tropical cyclones in the Philippines. He was a recipient of the Naga City Special Mayoral Award and the Citation of Heroism in recognition to his expertise and services rendered in his community.

This forum will be led and attended by RADM DANILO M CORTEZ AFP, Flag Officer In Command, PN along with other Philippine Navy senior leaders, selected middle grade and junior PN officers, enlisted personnel and civilian employee, as well as invited guests from other major services. The PN officers and personnel will also tackle the over-all preparedness in times of calamities during the forum.

The forum will be broadcast live to all six (6) naval forces in the country from Luzon to Mindanao via the Virtual Private Network (VPN). The VPN will also allow officers and personnel from said units to interact with the speaker. During disasters and calamities, naval forces would be able to give a blow-by-blow account of situations in their respective areas and request for rescue teams when needed.

In correlation with disaster preparedness, the Command had undertaken the Disaster Emergency Assistance and Rescue Training (DEART) from March 13, 2010 to June 16, 2010. This undertaking prepared residents to act and respond immediately in times of exigencies. About seventy (70) volunteers from Forbes Park Association Residents and Security Personnel were trained by personnel from Naval Reserve Center-National Capital Region based in Navotas City. This trained individual will form part of our Naval Reservist that will augment our regular components whenever their services is needed.

Taking our experience on the onslaught of Typhoons “Ondoy and Pepeng” in 2009. The Philippine Navy had strengthened its disaster response preparedness and capabilities by training and equipping our personnel, with the additions of our Disaster Response Operations (DRO) Trailers with equipments necessary for search, rescue and relief operations. With this your Philippine Navy will always a dependable partner in an unforeseen situation and ready to respond anytime.

Navy honors 2 retiring flag officers

Director, Naval Public Affairs Office

The Philippine Navy (PN) will render testimonial honors for two retiring Flag Officers as a fitting tribute for their long, faithful and dedicated services rendered to the AFP and the nation. Rear Admiral Danilo M Cortez AFP, the Navy chief will lead the testimonial honors for Rear Admiral Josefino B Solidum AFP and Commodore Efren S Tedor AFP at four o’clock in the afternoon, Tuesday, 16 June 2010 at the Navy Headquarters in Roxas Boulevard, Manila. The ceremonies are expected to culminate in time for the sun to set in Manila Bay symbolizing the close of their naval careers.

Rear Admiral Solidum who retires on 19 June 2010, has served 33 years of naval service. He is a member of PMA Class of 1977 and also a graduate of the US Coast Guard Academy in Connecticut, USA. He has assumed various positions in the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) from 1977-1991. He also assumed Commanding Officer of the premier PCG stations in Cebu and Batangas. He had also commanded various naval ships such as BRP Rizal (PS 74), BRP Lake Buhi (AF 78) and BRP Conrado Yup (PG 840). Moreover, he assumed commands of Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao and Service Force, Philippine Fleet. He is a recipient of Outstanding Achievement Medal, Distinguished Service Star, Military Merit Medal, and various awards here and abroad. He is presently the Commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command.

On the other hand, Commodore Tedor who retires on 20 June 2010, has spent 32 years of service in the navy. He spent his junior billets aboard BRP Sultan Kudarat (PS 22) and BRP Andres Bonifacio (PS 7) of the Philippine Fleet. An educator, his commitment and dedication to duty afforded him to serve different positions in the General Headquarters from 1980 to 2000. He was also assigned various key positions in the Philippine Navy like the Commander of the Bonifacio Naval Station and as The Naval Internal Auditor. He is also a recipient of various awards, medals and commendations. He is the incumbent Chief of the AFP Command Center and a member of PMA Class of 1978.

Testimonial Parades and Review are the least that the Philippine Navy can do to honor its distinguished officers who have served the prime of their lives in the military.