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Warship ‘Ramon Alcaraz’ finally arrived in PH

President Benigno Aquino III stated the arrival of the Navy frigate, renamed BRP Ramon Alcaraz, and nicknamed by the Philippine Navy “Monching” was proof of the government’s longing to have Armed Forces capable of protecting its people.


Aquino added that the first Hamilton class-cutter, BRP Gregorio del Pilar, has made patrolling the seas more extensive and faster, and the arrival of the BRP Ramon Alcaraz will further enhance this.


He called the second Hamilton class-cutter from the United States a big boost to the Navy in patrolling the seas amid a territorial row with China.


The President, cabinet members and the military top brass watched from the BRP Ang Pangulo as the 3,250-ton decommissioned warship from the US Coast Guard docked at the port here, after a voyage of two months from the United States.


The 3,390-ton BRP Gregorio del Pilar, the country’s largest and most modern warship got entangled last year in a standoff with Chinese vessels at Panatag Shoal (Scarborough Shoal), a sprawling fishing ground more than 260 kilometers (160 miles) west of Subic that came under Beijing’s control after Philippine vessels withdrew.


“Now that the BRP Ramon Alcaraz is here, we’re certain that this would intensify the patrol of the Philippine Economic Zone as well as our capability to overcome any threat from bad elements, respond to search and rescue operations, and protect our resources,” Aquino said in his speech.


Accordingly, Aquino understood that it is not a match for a militarily superior China, but both Philippine and US officials have agreed to bolster the country’s defenses to make them more credible.


Washington is a defense treaty ally of the Philippines and is obligated to help fend off outside aggression.

Corabelle is the Bayanihan's Phillippine News Correspondent.