Japanese spy plane, Philippine patrol aircraft conduct mission to Recto Bank

The Maritime Training Activity between Philippine Navy and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force was officially started June 22 in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. The joint training aims to develop interoperability of units in humanitarian assistance and disaster response operations especially on search and rescue of stricken vessels or downed aircraft in the high seas.

“This Navy-to-Navy engagement envisions on sharing best practices in non-traditional operations such as search and rescue operations at sea. At the end of the activity the PN expects to improve the techniques and procedures of its Naval Air Group,” PN public affairs office chief Cmdr. Lued Lincuna said.

“Likewise, this activity also intends to foster camaraderie, strengthen bilateral partnership between the two navies,” Lincuna added.

In today’s activity, a Japanese P3-C Orion surveillance plane with three Filipinos onboard flew for a search and rescue training mission above Recto Bank, Reuters reports. A smaller aircraft from Philippine Navy accompanied the Japanese spy plane during the said mission.

“We practiced search and rescue patterns, which are essential in any humanitarian assistance and disaster response operations,” Marine Colonel Jonas Lumawag said.