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Press Release

22 June 2015 - The newly sworn in Commander of the US Pacific Fleet (PACFLT),  Admiral Scott Swift, who assumed his command last May 27 during the Joint US Pacific Fleet and United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) Change of Command ceremonies, welcomed Philippine Consul General to Honolulu Gina Jamoralin at his headquarters in Pearl Harbor.

Consul General Jamoralin was accompanied by Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Liaison to USPACOM, Capt. Rey dela Cruz, Philippine Navy. Admiral Swift is the 35th PACFLT commander since the Fleet was established in February 1941. The US Pacific Fleet area of responsibility (AOR) encompasses almost half of the earth’s surface, from the North Pole to Antarctica; from the west coasts of North America and South America, extends through the Pacific Ocean, and concludes in the Indian Ocean.

Consul General Jamoralin thanked the Admiral and Mrs. Swift for attending the Philippine Consulate General’s reception on June 12 at the Hilton Waikiki Hotel which was Admiral Swift’s first official public event after assuming the position of PACFLT commander.

Admiral Swift appreciated the close relations between the US and the Philippines and added that under his leadership, he will maintain closer relations with the Philippine Consulate General and the AFP.  Among the topics discussed was the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea) during which the Consul General updated the Pacific Fleet Commander of the status of the Philippines’ arbitration case.  Admiral Swift appreciated the Philippines’ peaceful and rules-based approach to solve territorial claims according to international law.

Both officials noted the robust relations between the USPACOM, the AFP and the Department of National Defense through joint and multilateral exercises to promote interoperability among partner countries. It is also acknowledged that these military to military exercises, subject matter expert exchanges  and port visits promote capacity building for  Philippine personnel in line with President Benigno Aquino III’s program on AFP modernization.

Consul General Jamoralin thanked Admiral Swift for US Navy’s Pacific Partnership (PP) missions providing humanitarian and civic assistance conducted with partner nations including the Philippines especially during natural disasters. The US Pacific Fleet sent USNS Mercy hospital ship in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda in Tacloban, Leyte in November 2013. This year, US Pacific Fleet ships are planning to conduct port visits to the Philippines sometime this year under the PP 2015 mission.

The Commander of the Pacific Fleet has also lined up his visits to US allies in the region to include the Philippines, Japan and South Korea this year. END