CARAT 2011 set in Puerto Princesa City

NAVAL Forces West of the Philippine Navy and the Pacific Fleet of the United States Navy are all set to undertake Bilateral Exercise “Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training” (CARAT 2011) at Puerto Princesa City and along the Sulu Sea on June 28-July 8.

The activity is part of the RP-US Defense Treaty of 1951 and is being executed every year. The main purpose of the activity is to strengthen the ties and cooperation between the two Navies by the exchange of knowledge and skills in the field of navigation and naval operations, particularly maritime defense, port security, resource protection and disaster response.

Highlights of CARAT 2011 are the personnel exchange between the two ships for the effective commutation of information between the PN and USN, friendship games and PN-hosted and USN-hosted reception dinners to further strengthen the relationship between the two parties involved.

Civil Military Operations are also scheduled to be able to reach out to the residents of Palawan, particularly Medical and Dental Civic Action at Barangay Tagabinet; Engineering Civic Action at Barangay Mangingisda Elementary School; and Community Relation Activity at Tagburos Elementary School and Gregorio Oquendo Memorial Elementary School.  A Community Service and Public Affairs activity is also set in the form of free music lessons at Palawan State University Laboratory High School and Palawan National School.  To cap off the activity, there will be a free band concert by the Philippine Marine Corps and the US 7th Fleet Band at the Puerto Princesa City Ampitheatre and at the NCCC Mall.

Members of the US Navy are also scheduled to visit the Puerto Princesa Underground River, the city’s biggest and most popular tourist destination.

“This is an opportunity for the Naval Forces West, the city of Puerto Princesa and the province of Palawan to showcase its beauty and its natural resources,” said. Commodore Edgardo Tamayo. “This exercise will certainly prove its worth as all aspects of naval operations are being integrated as the two navies further their interoperability.”  Verlin Ruiz

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