TWO assault boats from the Special Forces Regiment Airborne (SFRA) were turned over to Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) on December 26, 2017, which are an additional asset for maritime monitoring against lawless armed groups at Naval Station Felix Apolinario, Panacan, Davao City.

Major Ezra Balagtey, Eastmincom public information officer, said the assault boats were formally turned over to Eastmincom Commander Lieutenant General Benjamin R. Madrigal Jr. by Brigadier General Ramiro Manuel A. Rey, Commander of SFRA during a military ceremony.

Madrigal, during his acceptance speech thanked the AFP leadership for heeding their request and attending to the need of the Command to better improve their capabilities especially in combating illegal activities and terrorist who will attempt to enter their jurisdiction.

“Further he recognized the assault boats as an added capability in securing the municipal waters in the area of responsibility, particularly Davao Gulf, to preempt terrorists, piracy and other security threats from using the sea lanes in their terrorist and criminal acts,” Balagtey said.

The assault boats will also be on a multi-mission which means they can also be used for disaster response in time of calamities.

“Aside from their counter/anti-terrorist capability, the boats which are manned by Special Forces Riverine troopers can also be deployed in the conduct of water search and rescue operations,” Balagtey added.

He said that the boats will be initially deployed to the Joint Task Force Haribon which has the jurisdiction of Mega Davao.