MANILA - Filipino and American elite soldiers have begun a 3-week training exercise in Nueva Ecija dubbed Balance Piston 22-1, the Philippine Army said Wednesday.
Members of the Philippine Army’s Special Forces Regiment "Airborne" and of the U.S. Army Special Forces are taking part in the drills that opened last Feb. 14 at Fort Ramon Magsaysay. The activities will run through March 7.
Participants are expected "to learn and exchange tactics, techniques, procedures, and best practices," the Philippine Army said.
The events will focus on the following:
- Human rights and law of armed conflict
- Combat management of marksmanship skills
- Small unmanned aerial systems tactics techniques and procedures
- Command and control structure
- Mission planning
- Unconventional warfare subject matter experts exchange
- Crisis action planning
- Fundamentals of reconnaissance
- Find, fix, finish, exploit, analyze, disseminate
- Urban reconnaissance
- Tactical combat casualty care
Balance Piston 22-1, an annual bilateral exercise, "tests and validates plans, procedures, and concepts to enhance collaboration and interoperability," the Philippine Army said.
Last week, the Philippines got 4 new training aircraft worth $2.2 million from the United States. This is part of the country's plans to boost its maritime security capabilities.
The Philippines and the US have been allies under their Mutual Defense Treaty forged in 1951.
Under the treaty, the two sides are obligated to come to each other's aid in case of external aggression.
The US is the oldest security ally of the Philippines, with a wide-ranging security partnership that includes assistance to support Philippine efforts towards enhancing its defense capabilities.