Biden administration releases gun crime prevention strategy

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 24, 2021   •   510

United States (US) President Joe Biden announced a gun crime prevention strategy to ensure public safety and to address the surge of gun crimes in the country.

During his speech, Biden lamented the increase of gun crimes in the US especially during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. He reiterated the need to establish an assault weapons ban. There would also be local programs that would talk to people in the community.

“We support the need for community violence intervention. These are local programs that will utilize trust in messages. Community members and leaders will work directly with people who are most like to commit gun crimes or become victims of gun crimes” he said.

Biden also encouraged the various states to deploy additional police authorities in their area. He also warned against individuals who supply illegal firearms.

“If you willfully sell a gun to someone is prohibited from possessing it, if you willfully fail to run a background check, if you willfully falsify record, if you willfully fail to cooperate with the request for inspections.. my message you as this will find you and we will seek your license to sell guns will make sure you can sell death and Mayhem on our street,” he said.

The President continues to call on Congress to take action to end the gun violence epidemic. AAC (with reports from Justin Masakayan)

US delivers P48M worth of new weapons, munitions to PH military

Robie de Guzman   •   July 8, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The United States (US) has delivered to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) P48.5 million worth of new weapons and munitions, its embassy in Manila said Thursday.

The delivery, funded by the U.S. grant assistance, included 14 M2A1 .50 caliber heavy machine guns, seven M240B machine guns, and thousands of rounds of ammunition.

The items were turned over by the US military to the AFP on July 4 at Clark Air Base.

The delivery was intended to enhance the AFP’s counterterrorism capabilities and readiness, the embassy said.

“As the United States and Philippines celebrate 75 years of diplomatic relations today, we welcome this key equipment transfer, which will support the continued readiness of the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” JUSMAG-P Chief and Senior Defense Official to the Philippines Col. Stephen Ma said in a statement.

The Philippines is the largest recipient of U.S. military assistance in the Indo-Pacific.  Since 2015, the United States has provided more than Php48.6 billion ($1 billion) in security assistance to the Philippines, the embassy said.

This year, the United States and the Philippines are commemorating 70 years since the signing of the Mutual Defense Treaty, and this delivery continues the United States’ longstanding commitment to our Filipino allies, it added.

 

US offers support to Philippines after C-130 plane crash in Sulu

Robie de Guzman   •   July 5, 2021

The United States of America (USA) has extended its condolences to the Philippines after a C-130 military plane with 96 people on board crashed in Sulu on Sunday.

“On behalf of the United States, I offer our deep condolences to the people of the Philippines regarding the tragic plane crash in which several dozen service members were killed,” US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said in a statement.

“Our thoughts are with those who were injured and the families of those who were lost,” he added.

Sullivan also offered support to the Philippines in its disaster response effort.

“We stand shoulder to shoulder with our Philippine allies at this difficult time and are ready to provide all appropriate support to the Philippines’ response effort,” he said.

A Philippine Air Force C-130 plane, with tail number 5125, crashed around 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.

Initial investigation showed that the plane took off from Lumbia Airport in Cagayan de Oro City and was about to land in Jolo port in Sulu when it crashed. The plane was said to have missed the runway while trying to land.

As of Monday, the number of military personnel who died from the fiery crash climbed to 47, while 49 were injured.

Of those injured, 32 were evacuated to Zamboanga City while 18 are being treated at Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital and 11th Infantry Division Hospital.

Three civilians on the ground were also killed and four others were hurt.

The military said all passengers, pilots, and crew were already retrieved.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenza has ordered a full investigation into the incident.

Biden extends condolences to the Filipino people on the passing ex-president Noynoy Aquino

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 25, 2021

United States (US) President Joe Biden extended his condolences to the Filipino people on the passing of former President Benigno ‘Noynoy’ Aquino III.

In a statement, Biden said Aquino was a valued friend and partner to the United States. He added that Aquino  served the Philippines with integrity and selfless dedication.

“President Aquino’s steadfast commitment to advancing peace, upholding the rule of law, and driving economic growth for all Filipinos, while taking bold steps to promote the rules-based international order, leaves a remarkable legacy at home and abroad that will endure for years to come,” he said.

The US President also extended his heartfelt sympathies toAquino’s family and to all who will mourn his absence. AAC

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