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CAMP AGUINALDO, Quezon City, Philippines - From left, Armed Forces of the Philippines Lt. Gen. Emmanuel B. Salamat, commander, Armed Forces of the Philippines Northern Luzon Command; Sung Y. Kim, U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines; Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana, Philippine Secretary of National Defense; Armed Forces of the Philippines Lt. Gen. Carlito G. Galvez Jr., chief of staff, Armed Forces of the Philippines and U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, commanding general, III Marine Expeditionary Force raise their arms while standing shoulder-to-shoulder during the Exercise Balikatan opening ceremony held at Tejeros Hall, Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City, Manila, Philippines, 07 May 2018. The ceremony represented the official commencement of Exercise Balikatan and the continued partnership between the United States and the Republic of the Philippines. Exercise Balikatan, in its 34th iteration, is an annual U.S.-Philippine military training focused on a variety of missions, including humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, counterterrorism, and other combined military operations held from May 7 to May 18.


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