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Russia donates rifles, ammo and trucks to PH

Updated

By Genalyn Kabiling and Francis Wakefield

Amid improving bilateral defense ties, Russia has donated a shipload of weapons and military vehicles to the Philippine military to help boost its counterterrorism capability.

The military donation, received by President Duterte and defense and security officials, consisted of 5,000 Kalashnikov assault rifles, 20 army trucks, 5,000 steel helmets, and a million rounds of ammunition.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte together with Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu looks on as they listen to the demonstration of the Russian Firearms and Artillery during the shipboard tour at the turnover ceremony of military equipment by Russia and visit to the Large-Anti-Submarine Ship "Admiral Pantaleev", dock at Pier 15, Port of Manila on October 25, 2017. Also in photo are: AFP Chief of Staff General Eduardo Año, Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence 'Bong' Go, and other government officials and Russian officials. (Richard V. Viñas / MANILA BULLETIN)

President Rodrigo R. Duterte together with Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu looks on as they listen to the demonstration of the Russian Firearms and Artillery during the shipboard tour at the turnover ceremony of military equipment by Russia and visit to the Large-Anti-Submarine Ship “Admiral Pantaleev”, dock at Pier 15, Port of Manila on October 25, 2017. Also in photo are: AFP Chief of Staff General Eduardo Año, Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence ‘Bong’ Go, and other government officials and Russian officials. (Richard V. Viñas / MANILA BULLETIN)

The President witnessed the turnover of the military equipment after his tour inside one of the two Russian ships docked at the Manila port. Duterte did not deliver any speech but was seen thanking the Russian defense officials for the military aid.

The donation came a day after the Philippines and Russia signed an agreement on military and technical cooperation on the sidelines of a defense ministers’ meeting in Clark, Pampanga. A contract on supplying weapons and ammunition to the Philippines was also signed the other day.

National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. said the government welcomes the Russian military aid amid enhanced defense cooperation between the two countries.

“This is the occasion for the donation by Russia of AK 47 and 20 trucks which indeed we really need,” Esperon said in a media interview after the ceremony. “The AK-47 are not in our inventory so we will see how they can be distributed because units can’t have different weapons but more likely, this will be concentrated in specific units,” he added.

Esperon also downplayed speculations that the country’s defense ties with Russia might harm relations with Moscow’s traditional rival, the United States.

“All ships of friendly countries are welcome the Philippine ports,” he said about the latest visit of the Russian ships to the country.

“It provides diversity to our kind of training, meaning we get more exposure to different technology as well as techniques, so that should be a welcome addition,” he added.

Among the officials present during the turnover ceremony were Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano.

The Department of National Defense (DND), for its part, said Russia’s donation of military equipment to the Philippines deepens the two countries relationship.

In a telephone interview, DND spokesman Director Arsenio Andolong, welcomed the donation from the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation to the Republic of the Philippines, which is expected to be used primarily in counter-terrorism.

“This gesture by the Russian Federation is a sign of deepening relations that we are developing with Russia and the equipment donated will be used in various operations by the Armed Forces of the Philippines but primarily in counter terrorism efforts,” Andolong said.

Andolong said Russia’s donation to the Philippines of the military equipment is a way for it to expand its network in other countries.

“Actually, Russia is also expanding its network with other nations in the global community. Tayo din ganun ang ginawa natin pag-upo ni President Duterte (On our part we also did that when President Duterte assumed the presidency),” Andolong said.

“We are also broadening our relationship with other countries. So nagkatugma lang na I think this is the right time to forge our cooperation with Russia,” he added.

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  • johnny wang

    They have donated what they no longer need and its all outdated stuff which even the guys in Afghanistan would not have accepted

    • Catalyst of Change

      Crab spotted. Even after almost seven decades (production started 1945), the model and its variants remain the most popular and widely used assault rifles in the world because of their substantial reliability under harsh conditions, low production costs compared to contemporary Western weapons, availability in virtually every geographic region and ease of use. The AK-47 has been manufactured in many countries and has seen service with armed forces as well as irregular forces and insurgencies worldwide, and was the basis for developing many other types of individual, crew-served and specialised firearms. As of 2004, “Of the estimated 500 million firearms worldwide, approximately 100 million belong to the Kalashnikov family, three-quarters of which are AK-47s.

    • Lesjie Blue

      lol how ignorant are you? AK has been in the arsenal of many nations since WWII and the most reliable assault rifle. outdated daw ang AK, ay tang a mo naman, may bago na bang rifle at ammo sa america (.553 pa rin ang bala nila nun pa man, 3.08 – 5.0 ang sniper ammo nila kailan pa man, hindi na nagbago.)? Yung utak mo outdated! walang alam sa baril panay pa din ang comment.

  • Ros Feliciano

    For as long as we just receive donations and not manufacturing our own war assets, we remain comparable to receiving foods instead of seeds to plant. In a shooting war we cannot depend on the suppliers to continually provide donations or even we have money to buy. We must learned from experiences. Japan lasted a long war with the allied powers because it could manufacture its own arms. The Arab countries dependent on supplies from countries that they cannot manufacture their own arms did not last long in the Arab Israel war in 1967. So we must provide supports to our local manufacturers of arms even from the scratch. Why don’t we get this bad experience from our own allied countries that are hesitant to provide us arms to fight lawlessness because of many imposed conditions? We MUST manufacture our own arms no matter how crude after all we can learn how to enhance our talents.