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PCG: To further enhance the coastal surveillance capability of the Philippine Coast Guard and its neighboring countries, a two-week 15th Maritime Law Enforcement (MARLEN) exercise is being held between the Southeast Asian Coast Guards spearheaded by the Japan Coast Guard (JCG) in the PCG Headquarters and within Manila Harbor which started last 07 November until 16 November as part of the capacity-building assistance of the Japan government to the Philippines.

This activity is in line with the renewed defense and security cooperation agreement between the two nations offered to extend assistance in ensuring effective operation of the multi-role response vessels (MRRVs) and high-speed boats provided by the government of Japan. 

For this exercise, JCG deployed its Mobile Cooperation Team which consists of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) MARLEN experts who are currently training 40 participants from the PCG. Moreover, Coast Guards from the Vietnam, Indonesia and Malaysia will also take part in the drills while members of the US Coast Guard will share their expertise in outboard engine maintenance from November 13 to 16. 

Several drills will involve high-speed inflatable boats of the PCG’s MRRV from Japan which will cover pre-boarding procedure, tactical concept and conduct of tactical maneuvering procedure. Meanwhile, basic operations such as leaving and entering harbors, turning, pursuing and running parallel as well as advanced operating techniques such as pincer control and boarding other vessels will also be demonstrated during the event.

The said exercise is part of the JCG’s Project for Comprehensive and Practical Capacity-Building in Maritime Law Enforcement and has been collaborating with JICA since 2016 until 2019. This project aims to support the development of PCG’s training programs and envisions the participants  to cascade the skills learned during the training to further enhance the law enforcement capacity of the PCG.

The JCG has been implementing capacity-building support for the PCG in various fields over many years, and has been continuously dispatching long-term specialists in the human resources development and law enforcement fields since 2000. This year, the PCG’s Japanese counterparts dispatched short-term specialists to conduct maritime exercises for high-speed boat drills in Davao last June and arresting technique drills in Manila last August.