- The Philippine Marines Corps has carried out the service's first-ever landing operation with amphibious assault vehicles from a Tarlac-class ship
- The operation validates the service's ability to undertake operations from the Philippine Navy's strategic sealift vessels
The Philippine Marine Corps (PMC) has conducted its first-ever ship-to-shore amphibious landing operation involving the service's Korean-made amphibious assault vehicles (KAAVs) and a Philippine Navy Tarlac-class strategic sealift vessel (SSV).
The operation was carried out as part of an amphibious assault vehicle subject matter expert exchange activity with the United States Marines Corps' (USMC's) 3rd Marine Division.
This activity took place from late-August until early-September, and has been done to prepare both services for Exercise 'Kaagapay Ng Mga Mandirigma Ng Dagat (Kamandag) 3' - a annual bilateral training activity between the PMC and the USMC.
"This exchange marks a milestone in the relationship between the US Marine Corps, Philippine Marine Corps, and Philippine Navy and allows for increased opportunities for future interoperability training in the Indo-Pacific region", according to a USMC statement.
"The 3rd Marine Division and the Philippine Marine Corps Armour Battalion have been working together on AAV integration for amphibious operations over the past eight years. This process includes events like developing appropriate facilities for the AAVs, conducting training on operating and maintaining the vehicles, and developing standard operating procedures for the vehicle's employment," the statement added.
The PMC received its first batch of four KAAVs in late-April, as part of a PHP2.42 billion (USD45 million) contract signed with South Korea's Hanwha Techwin in 2016 for eight vehicles. The first batch arrived just days after the PMC conducted an 'activation ceremony' for its Amphibious Assault Vehicle Company, which was formally stood up on 25 April.
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