Jul 032013

The BRP Alcaraz, the Philippine Navy’s newest warship, is due to arrive in the Philippines on August 3, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.

In an article posted on its website July 3, the DFA mentioned the expected arrival date after the BRP Alcaraz reached San Diego last June 29.

“BRP Alcaraz is expected to arrive in the Philippines on August 3, 2013,” it said.

Last June 29, the BRP Alcaraz arrived at the 52nd US Naval Base in San Diego, California, while en route to the Philippines.

Its crew received a warm welcome from Philippine Consul General to Los Angeles Maria Hellen de la Vega and the Filipino community, the same article said.

De la Vega said the BRP Alcaraz is “a fitting acquisition for the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ modernization program.”

She added it “will enhance the Philippines’ naval assets, adding the Philippines must attach greater focus and attention to maritime security.”

BRP Alcaraz (PF-16) is the Philippine Navy’s second Hamilton-class cutter and sister ship of the BRP Gregorio del Pilar (PF-15).

The BRP Alcaraz has 14 officers and 74 crew members led by Capt. Ernesto Baldovino.

“(It) is capable of conducting patrols for long periods of time and can withstand heavy weather and rough sea conditions,” the DFA said.

BRP Alcaraz was named after Commodore Ramon Alcaraz, a Philippine Navy officer, who commanded a patrol boat that shot down three Japanese aircraft. — RSJ, GMA News

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