SUBIC BAY FREEPORT. President Rodrigo R. Duterte visited Saturday afternoon the Japanese helicopter carrier JS Kaga (DDH184) at the Alava Pier.
In a statement, the Assistant Defense Attaché of the Japanese embassy said JS Kaga of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) is currently deployed in Indo-Southeast Asia for two months until latter October. This is in line with "Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy" promoted by the government of Japan.
It is making port calls in five countries namely India, Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Philippines.
The purpose of this deployment is to enhance its operational capability and to promote cooperation and interoperability with partner navies.
“JMSDF is seeking active contribution to the peace and stability in Indo-Pacific region and to deepen and enhance mutual understanding and trust with countries in the region,” the Assistant Defense Attaché furthered.
JS Kaga was named after Kaga province in Japan. She was built in Japan Marine United Yokohama Shipyard and was commissioned on March 2017.
She currently has five embarked SH-60K patrol helicopters and has a duty as part of the joint task force during disaster relief operations.
JS Kaga is part of Escort Flotilla Four of the JMSDF which is currently docked at the Alava Pier.
Others belonging to this group include an Akizuki-class destroyer JS Suzutsuki (DD-117), and Murasame-class destroyer JS Inazuma (DD-105).
“Escort Flotilla Four is on a five-day goodwill visit in the Philippines from September 1-5. It consists of series of confidence building activities between the Japanese and Philippine navies including courtesy call, shipboard tour, lectures, reciprocal reception, and sports events,” Philippine Navy (PN) said.
“This visit is a demonstration of fostering commitment to the cooperation between the two nations which benefit regional peace and stability,” PN added.
Escort Flotilla Four has approximately 800 personnel including 40 females. (CLJD-PIA 3)