CAMP GEN EMILIO AGUINALDO, Quezon City (DWDD) – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and United States Armed Forces formally concluded the 34th iteration of the PH-US Exercise Balikatan 34-2018 in a simple ceremony held at the Tejeros Hall, AFP Commissioned Officers Club at Camp Gen Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City.
The ceremony commenced with an Invocation led by Commodore Tirso Dolina, Chief Chaplain AFP.
This was followed by the Welcome Remarks / Recommendation to close PH-US Exercise Balikatan 2018 by BGen Thomas Weidley USMC – US Officer Conducting Exercise and Lt Gen Emmanuel Salamat – PH Exercise Director.
“We close this year’s Balikatan Exercise with both Philippines and US Forces gained maximum benefits from the various training exchanges and cooperation. It provided venue for lot of more training opportunities but also extended significant community assistance that gained popular support of less fortunate people in selected areas in Northern Luzon. The BK 2018 manifests our commitment and responsibility to pursue cooperation and inter-operability to pursue cooperation and inter-operability of both forces,“ Lt Gen Salamat said.
“Our militaries have grown together in friendship, provided benefit to countless people, and are better prepared to respond as one cohesive team to any crisis or challenge that may threaten the pealce and stability taht our alliance has helped to secure.” BGen Weidley said.
Gen Carlito Galvez, AFP Chief of Staff delivered his Remarks and formally declared the Closing of the exercise.
Lt Gen Salamat and BGen Weidley jointly furled the Balikatan Flag.
Defense Undersecretary Cardozo Luna gave his Remarks in behalf of Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
CSAFP Gen Galvez formally introduced the Guest of Honor and Speaker Michael Klecheski, US Charge d’ Affaires. AES / MCAG / Photos by Emil Palon and AM Glen Gultian PAF