AFP to receive 100 ‘excess’ armored vehicles from US
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will receive by the end of the year more than 100 M113 armored personnel carriers (APCs) from the United States government as excess defense articles, according to AFP spokesperson Col. Restituto Padilla.
Of the 114 M113A2 APCs, 77 units arrived at the port of Subic on Wednesday night, while 37 more are scheduled to arrive on Dec. 14.
“It’s a most welcome development, particularly for the Philippine Army, as it energizes and strengthens its mechanized division. If the Philippine Air Force has entered the supersonic age, the Philippine Navy has gone wet and wild, then the Army is now macho,” Padilla said on Thursday.
The United States has pledged to deliver 114 M113A2 APCs to the Philippines under the Excess Defense Article Program.
Under the program, the United States gives its excess military equipment without cost to qualified allied countries.
The AFP earlier made a formal request to the United States to upgrade its defense modernization efforts. Some of the M113A2 APCs are are scheduled to take part in the AFP Day Parade on Dec. 21.
Padilla said the APCs were given free to the Philippines although the AFP shouldered the transportation costs of the shipment of the APCs to the country.
Earlier this year, the AFP purchased six upgraded M113A1 APCs with remote controlled weapons systems from Elbit Systems in Israel.
The six delivered in September were the first of 28 APCs, which came at a P882 million price tag. All of the APCs will be armed with a M2 heavy barrel cal. 50 machine gun.
Padilla said the 114 M113A2 APCs from the United States are the latest addition to the Philippine Army’s mechanized infantry division.
“Battle-steeled movement will be expedited, accuracy in operation when mobilized will be fast-tracked, and the survivability or security of our troops in the field can be guaranteed,” Padilla said.
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