MINSK, Belarus – Members of the Philippine Army recently competed at the International Army Games, a multi-event military competition held simultaneously in six countries from July 28 to August 11.
Eighteen countries battled it out in the event held in Russia, Belarus, China, Kazakhstan, Armenia, and Iran. The Philippine contingent bagged 12th place in the “Sniper Frontier” category when they competed here.
“It’s a very good experience on the part of our shooting team. They have been competing in different shooting events in Asia and (won) gold medals. The competition [here in] Belarus was a learning experience [because] bago ang mga ginagamit na baril (new firearms were used),” said Major Dranreb Lansang of the Philippine Army Education and Training Branch in a text message.
He added that it was an “eye-opener” to mingle with soldiers from different countries with whom the Philippines does not have joint drills.
“Most of the participants come from special forces ng bawat (of every) country. And we can say [that] we Filipinos can compete with them.”
Aside from the Philippine team, other countries that competed in the Sniper Frontier competition were Russia, Belarus, Serbia, Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Iran, Mongolia, Armenia, China, Azerbaijan, Zimbabwe, Morocco, Venezuela, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Bangladesh, and Syria.
Sergey Shoygu, Russian Defense Minister, opened the event. He said each year, more teams participate in the games and the contests become more complicated.
He stressed, however, that the spirit of courage, generosity and comradeship remain unchanged and continue to prevail on the mock battlefields.
Belarus Defense Minister Lt. Gen. Andrei Ravkov, meanwhile, led the closing ceremonies and thanked all the teams for participating in the contest he described as an honest and stubborn struggle. He presented medals, prizes, and gifts to the winners.
Other events at the competition were a tank biathlon, visual aerial reconnaissance and advanced low-altitude flying, among others.
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