PH peacekeepers new mission: Secure Pope Francis, APEC 2015 | Global News

PH peacekeepers new mission: Secure Pope Francis, APEC 2015

/ 05:34 PM October 01, 2014

Philippine troops, who are to be deployed as U.N. Peacekeepers in Haiti, take their oath during sendoff ceremony Monday, Sept. 22, 2014 at Villamor Air Base at suburban Pasay city south of Manila, Philippines. Philippine President Benigno Aquino III said he's been told security threats on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights are not expected to ease soon, dimming hopes that U.N. peacekeepers can be deployed back to the region in the near future. Monday's sendoff came hours after the last batch of Filipino UN Peacekeepers arrived home after fighting rebels in Golan. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

Filipino peacekeepers. AP FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—What is the next mission for Filipino peacekeepers after their “greatest escape” in Golan Heights? That’s Pope Francis and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation in 2015.

“So far, we have already given the marching order by the Chief of Staff to secure the Pope. So, presently we are conducting — reorganizing our units. Definitely, it will be a different mission and we are already preparing our training; and, of course, we have given a lot of coordination most probably with the Philippine National Police because as announced by the Chief of Staff we will be under supervision by the Philippine National Police. And with that, then we are preparing ourselves, conditioning ourselves and, most probably, there will be another different task that lies ahead of us and we are just only prepared,” said Lieutenant Col. Ted Dumusmog, 7th Philippine Contingent to Golan Heights Commander on Wednesday, October 1.


Dumusmog will also lead the next missions.


The Filipino peacekeepers returned home last September in two batches, after being deployed in Golan Heights last November 2013.

“Definitely, it is a challenging mission because it’s not like a combat mission that we used to undertake but it is different. We do not know yet what is the specific of it so we are just waiting for the mission that will be given to us come January 15, next year,” Dumusmog said.

He added that they would undergo training with the Philippine National Police on VIP handling, law enforcement in the coming months.

But before this, they will take a 15-day vacation leave.

They were given a heroes’ welcome on Wednesday by President Benigno Aquino III at Malacanang and the military leadership at Camp Aguinaldo.

Dumusmog said they were looking forward to their next mission and expressed confidence that his men would be able to do their job well.


“Most of them, most probably, it will be the first time to see personally the Pope and they are very much excited,” he said.



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TAGS: Apec 2015, Filipino peacekeepers, Golan Heights, Greatest Escape, Military, Pope Francis, Security

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