Representatives from the US Embassy in the Philippines’ Joint US Military Assistance Group (JUSMAG) delivered new military equipment to the Philippine Army and Marine Corps on January 27.
The transfer included over 400 M203 grenade launchers, 85 M40A5 sniper rifles, and a RQ-11B Raven unmanned aerial vehicle system consisting of three drones for exclusive use and ownership by the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
The AFP procured the small-arms weapons through the US government’s Foreign Military Sales program. This equipment will help enhance the AFP’s counter-terrorism capabilities, and protect Philippine security forces actively engaged in counter-terrorism operations in the southern Philippines.
In addition to the small-arms transfer, the US government provided a Raven unmanned aerial vehicle system through the grant counter-terrorism program. As part of the grant, and in addition to the three unmanned aerial vehicles included in the Raven system, Philippine service members received training in the United States on its operations and maintenance. The Raven is a hand-launched unmanned aerial vehicle that will increase the AFP’s capabilities to conduct intelligence collection, mission planning, and reconnaissance operations.
The equipment transfer and continued bilateral training efforts demonstrate the commitment between the Philippines and US to work towards safer communities and the eradication of global terror networks.