President Rodrigo Duterte today led the 119th founding anniversary of the Philippine Navy with the theme: ‘Protecting the Seas, Securing Our Future,’ at the Sasa Wharf in Davao City on May 31, 2017.
In his message, the President refused to read the part of his prepared speech mentioning the recent acquisitions of military assets which were accomplished by the Aquino administration. He said he does not want to take credit.
However, the President said he will strengthen the Armed Forces and will end his term with the military “a little bit stronger”.
Among the highlights of the occasion was the commissioning to Navy service of the second Tarlac-class landing platform dock Barko ng Republika ng Pilipinas (BRP) Davao Del Sur (LD-602).
Tarlac-class vessels can carry 500 troops, two rigid-hull inflatable boats, two landing craft units, and three helicopters. They can also house and launch Amphibious Assault Vehicles (AAVs), truck-based mobile hospital, and different types of military trucks.
Also part of the highlights of the celebration was the capability demonstration of the newly acquired three Multi-Purpose Attack Crafts (MPACs) with missile armament provision.
These MPACs will be fitted with with Israel’s Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd’s Spike ER (extended range) in anti-ship mode capable of penetrating 1,000 mm (39 inches) of rolled homogeneous armor and has a maximum range of five miles.
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