Olympic medalists Hidilyn Diaz, Eumir Marcial receive awards from AFP

Robie de Guzman   •   August 26, 2021   •   314

MANILA, Philippines — Filipino Olympians Hidilyn Diaz and Eumir Marcial, who both serve as soldier-athletes, were conferred military awards on Wednesday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said.

In a ceremony at the AFP General Headquarters, Staff Sergeant Diaz received the Outstanding Achievement Medal with Second Bronze Anahaw Leaf for her gold-medal performance in the women’s 55kg category in weightlifting at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Diaz also received a plaque of recognition, the Philippine Flag and a simple token from the military leadership.

“What SSgt. Diaz has done was to bring hope and inspiration to millions of our fellow Filipinos, who up until this day continue to battle against the deadly COVID-19 pandemic,” said Lieutenant General Erickson Gloria, the AFP vice chief of staff.

Meanwhile, Sergeant Marcial was awarded the Chief of Staff, AFP Commendation Medal and Ribbon for his bronze-medal performance in the men’s boxing middleweight division.

The AFP also acknowledged other Olympians who also brought great honor to the country; Nesty Petecio and Carlo Paalam who both delivered silver medals in boxing.

As of July 2021, there are a total of 128 military athletes and coaches who compete in various sport events, of which, 23 are from the Philippine Army, 64 from the Philippine Air Force and 41 from the Philippine Navy.

PNP-AFP ops seize bomb-making materials in Cavite

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 15, 2021

Police and military operatives seized a huge cache of bomb-making materials in Cavite on Thursday, October 14.

Two individuals were arrested in a joint the operation carried out by the Philippine National Police (PNP) units led by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and Cavite Police Provincial Office in coordination with the Armed Forces of the Philippines and other PNP support units.

The suspects were identified as Charlito Tenorio, 52 years old, and Jay-ar Suson, 34 years old.

According to PNP chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar , Tenorio was arrested in a buy-bust operation in Brgy. Bacao 2, General Trias City, Cavite at 12:30 PM; while Suson, the alleged mastermind, was arrested at 5:30 in the afternoon in Tayabas, Quezon.

Confiscated from the suspects were 750 kilograms of ammonium nitrate contained in thirty 25-kilogram sacks, and 1,000 pieces of improvised blasting caps, all loaded in a commuter van. The confiscated explosive components worth P200,000 were being negotiated for sale by the suspects.

PNP chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar instructed local authorities in Cavite to identify all persons involved in their operations as well as their clients. He said that this type of explosive materials are “commonly used for industrial purposes, but can also be used as components for Improvised Explosive Device (IED).

“With this successful operation, we may have prevented the possibility of these materials being used for criminal activities,” Eleazar said.

The seized explosives reportedly have a blast radius of 1.5 kilometers. AAC

Philippine Air Force receives four drones from US military

Robie de Guzman   •   October 14, 2021

 The Philippine Air Force (PAF) has received four ScanEagle Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) from the United States Military, the US Embassy said on Thursday.

The UAS units worth P20 million were turned over to PAF at the Clark Air Bases in Pampanga on October 13.

The drones were personally received by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and PAF commander Lieutenant General Allen Paredes.

Chargé d’Affaires, ad interim (CDA) Heather Variava joined Commander of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Admiral John Aquilino and representatives from the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines’ Joint U.S. Military Assistance Group (JUSMAG) in delivering the drones to the PAD.

The donated drones are expected to provide the Philippines additional capabilities in unmanned Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR), and strengthen counterterrorism, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts.

It will also increase the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) domain awareness and border security capabilities.

“We remain committed to our promises on helping modernize the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and we hope this will further strengthen our combined capabilities in working together towards a free and open Indo-Pacific,” Variava said.

The embassy said the United States provides the AFP with grant assistance and expedited sales of arms and munitions to support its modernization goals and urgent maritime security, counterterrorism and humanitarian assistance, and disaster relief requirements.

The Philippines is by far the largest recipient of U.S. military assistance in the Indo-Pacific region, according to the embassy.

Since 2015, the United States has delivered more than P50.6 billion ($1.06 billion) worth of planes, ships, armored vehicles, small arms, and other military equipment to the Philippines, while training side-by-side with our Filipino allies, it added.

PNP to coordinate with AFP on campaign vs loose firearms

Robie de Guzman   •   October 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar on Thursday said they will closely work with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in strengthening efforts against the proliferation of loose firearms in the country.

In a statement, Eleazar said the PNP will be partnering with the AFP to bolster coordination and information-sharing to further intensify the campaign.

Eleazar’s statement follows the arrest of five people, including two soldiers and a policeman, for allegedly selling firearms during an entrapment operation in Barnagay Tamontaka in Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao last Tuesday.

The PNP identified the arrested individuals as Patrolman Eliver Jay Anggot Soverano, reportedly assigned to the PNP-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Regional Crime Laboratory Office; Datu Morjan Kunakon Tumindig; Adams Tuminding; and Army Staff Sgt. Gleen Argones Sangyao and Army Staff Sgt. Reynaldo Dichosa II, both are reportedly assigned to the 6th Infantry Division.

The operation was conducted after a police poseur-buyer was able to transact with the suspects for the sale of assorted firearms.

Seized from the suspects were a 5.56 mm Bushmaster rifle, two 5.56 rifle, an M4 Carbine, two cal. 45 pistols, and three 9mm pistols.

“Dahil sa insidenteng ito, makikipag-ugnayan ang inyong PNP sa liderato ng Armed Forces of the Philippines upang palakasin ang monitoring at mga operasyon laban sa sinumang magbebenta at bibili ng mga loose firearms, pulis man, sundalo o sinuman ang sangkot dito. Hindi natin hahayaan ang ganitong kalakaran lalo na at may eleksyon tayong dapat protektahan,” Eleazar said.

He said the PNP personnel arrested will be charged with both criminal and administrative charges.

He lauded the Datu Odin Sinsuat Municipal Police Station for the operation.

Eleazar earlier ordered police units to conduct early election security preparations that include aggressive operations against loose firearms and private armed groups.

“I am also warning all our personnel not to engage in this kind of illegal activity because I will make sure that the full force of the law will be used against you. Bilang mga alagad ng batas, hindi dapat tayo maging bantay-salakay at sa halip ay bantay ng bayan upang mapanatili ang kapayapaan at kaayusan,” he said.

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