PH, Korean armies OK working group to expand ties

Published August 22, 2020, 1:29 PM

by Martin Sadongdong

The Philippine Army (PA) announced Saturday that the Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) has accepted their proposal for the creation of an army working group that will boost the military cooperation between the two Asian countries.

The plan to establish an army working group was agreed upon when Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, PA commanding general, talked over the phone with ROKA chief of staff Gen. Suh Wook last Aug. 19.

Sobejana said a signing of Terms of Reference for the establishment of the ad hoc group will be done during counterpart visits once travel situation “gets better” amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

Sobejana stressed that the commitment “will significantly help the expansion of the Army-to-Army cooperation and relationship between the two armies.”

“Suh Wook also looks forward to discuss the details of PA and ROKA’s engagements in the future,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sobejana said Suh thanked the Philippines for its support in achieving freedom and peace in the Korean Peninsula as the latter recalled the commemoration of the 70th Korean War last month.

A Philippine Army contingent in the United Nations named Expeditionary Force to Korea (PEFTOK) took part in the Battles of Miudong, Yultong, and Eerie Hill during the Korean War in 1950.

Sobejana said that the PA “is very proud” of its involvement in the war as he assured ROKA of the same commitment to move forward in making the region a better place to live.

“The Philippine Army is thankful to the ROKA for allowing us to discuss matters of mutual interests despite the limitations due to COVID-19,” he said.

“The PA and the ROKA are continuously learning from each other in addressing both the current challenges of the pandemic as well as the peace and security concerns in the region,” he added.