MANILA -- Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo A. David assumed Friday morning as the 41st chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in formal ceremonies presided over by President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III.

David took over command of the 150,000-strong AFP from Lt. Gen. Nestor Ochoa who held the position for only 10 days, the shortest ever in the country’s military history.

The turnover ceremony was held at the AFP parade ground in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.

David asked the officers and men of the Armed Forces to give their utmost dedication and commitment and always be subservient to civilian authorities that will make the military organization as a “decisive force for national pride.”

He added that the AFP fully supports the peace talks to end the two-pronged insurgencies in the country but will not be complacent in stifling terror, apparently referring to the al-Qaeda linked Abu Sayyaf terrorist group in southern Philippines.

He also vowed that the AFP will always respect human rights. (Sunnex)