Philippines and Australia Commences MANA Mo with Tabletop Exercise
Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for Maritime and Ocean Affairs Maria Angela Ponce (left) and Australian Embassy Ambassador to the Philippines Steven Robinson (right) opened the Philippines-Australia Maritime Table Top Exercise held virtually on 03 September 2021 as part of the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and the celebration of the Maritime and Archipelagic Nation Awareness Month or MANA Mo. (DFA-MOAO photo)
PASAY CITY 06 September 2021 — The Department of Foreign Affairs-Maritime and Ocean Affairs Office and the Embassy of Australia in the Philippines organized a tabletop exercise (TTX) on 01 to 03 September 2021 to commence the celebration of Maritime and Archipelagic Nation Awareness Month (MANA Mo).
The TTX is part of a series of capacity-building activities in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of Philippines-Australia diplomatic relations. It was conducted on the heels of the successful inaugural Philippines-Australia Maritime Dialogue held in June 2021, and at the start of the month-long activities for MANA Mo, which intends to raise awareness and consciousness of the maritime and archipelagic issues and concerns of the Philippines.
A total of 110 participants from the DFA and other agencies including the Department of National Defense, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Navy, Philippine National Police-Maritime Group, National Coast Watch Center, and Western Mindanao Command benefited from the TTX under the expert facilitation of the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security .
The three-day exercise included a lecture on the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and two scenarios on illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, transnational crimes, and hot pursuit, where the participants were divided into break out groups. The TTX tested knowledge on the enforcement of laws and regulations of the Philippines, criminal jurisdiction on board a ship, and protocols for visit, board, search, and seizure.
The TTX also strengthened teamwork and coordination among various agencies to better respond to maritime security challenges within their respective jurisdictions. END
The Philippine TTX participants were composed of officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of National Defense, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Navy, Philippine National Police-Maritime Group, National Coast Watch Center, and Western Mindanao Command.(DFA-MOAO photo)
Foreign Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary for Maritime and Ocean Affairs Emmanuel R. Fernandez (left) and Australian Embassy to the Philippines Deputy Head of Mission Richard Sisson (right) successfully closed the first Philippines-Australia Tabletop Exercise (TTX) held virtually on 05 September 2021. (DFA-MOAO photo)