Philippine Navy Commissions Two Fast Attack Craft from Israel

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The Philippine Navy is making significant strides in enhancing its maritime capabilities with the upcoming commissioning of two fast attack craft from Israel. Set to take place in March, this development marks a significant milestone in the country’s ongoing efforts to modernize its naval forces.

Commander John Percie Alcos, the newly-designated Navy spokesman, confirmed that the commissioning of the fast attack craft, also known as the Acero-class gunboats, with bow numbers 906 and 907, will take place on November 18, 2023. These gunboats are equipped with missile system capabilities, further bolstering the Navy’s offensive capabilities.

When asked about the possibility of test firing their weapons, Alcos mentioned that the decision would be made by the technical inspection and acceptance committee (TIAC) team. This demonstrates the Navy’s commitment to ensuring the proper functioning and safety of its newly-acquired assets.

The delivery of the gunboats was facilitated through the general cargo ship Kogra Royal, and they are currently stationed at the Commodore East Posadas Wharf in Cavite City. Here, they will undergo enhancement, maintenance, and training to prepare them for active duty.

Once commissioned, the two gunboats will be designated as PG-906 and PG-907 under the Acero-class patrol vessels of the Fleet’s Littoral Combat Force. These additions bring the total number of Acero-class gunboats in the Navy’s inventory to four.

The acquisition of these fast attack craft is part of the Revised Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Program (RAFPMP) Horizon 2. The program includes a contract with Israel Shipyards for a total of nine platforms, as well as the transfer of technology to bolster the Philippine Navy’s shipbuilding capability. This strategic partnership with Israel highlights the Philippines’ commitment to strengthening its defense capabilities through collaboration with international partners.

The introduction of these advanced gunboats will significantly enhance the Navy’s ability to protect its territorial waters and respond effectively to potential threats. With their missile system capabilities, the Acero-class gunboats provide the Navy with increased firepower and versatility in various maritime operations.

The commissioning of these fast attack craft is a testament to the Philippine Navy’s dedication to modernization and its pursuit of a stronger and more capable naval force. As the country continues to navigate geopolitical challenges in the region, these advancements will serve as a crucial asset in maintaining maritime security and safeguarding national interests.

In conclusion, the commissioning of two fast attack craft from Israel marks an important milestone for the Philippine Navy. Equipped with missile system capabilities, these gunboats will significantly enhance the Navy’s offensive capabilities and contribute to its ongoing modernization efforts. As the Philippines continues to strengthen its defense capabilities, strategic partnerships with international allies like Israel play a vital role in ensuring maritime security and safeguarding national interests.

Source: The Manila Times

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