By Francis Wakefield
The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) vessel, JS IKAZUCHI (DD-107) with two SH-60K patrol helicopters and 220 crew onboard berthed at South Harbor, Manila on Tuesday for a goodwill visit to the Philippines.
It will be in Manila until Thursday, January 31.
The Japan Navy contingent is led by the Commander of Escort Division One, Captain Ryoko Azuma.
In her speech, she stated that the purpose of their visit is to deepen the partnership with the Philippine Navy through various opportunities and interaction.
“I believe that this visit will make a great contribution to the strong relations between our two countries.” Captain Azuma said.
Philippine Navy (PN) delegates headed by Capt Mardonio Navarro, representing the Flag Officer In Command, Philippine Navy (FOIC, PN), Vice Adm. Robert Empedrad, accorded the visiting navy a welcome ceremony upon arrival followed by a press briefing and health and security briefing aboard JS IKAZUCHI.
This is the first visit of the JMSDF this year and the eighth time since 2016. It is also the first time for JS IKAZUCHI to visit the Philippines.