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Members of US, Asean air forces join 2012 hot air balloon fest in Pampanga


MANILA, Philippines—Air forces of some Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members and the United States Air Force will join this year’s Philippine Hot Air Balloon Fiesta at Clark Field, Pampanga, a military spokesman said Tuesday.
The Singaporean Air Force, Indonesian Air Force, Royal Brunei Air Force and the US Air Force will join the Armed Forces of the Philippines in showcasing its own military capabilities, said Colonel Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr.
“The AFP extended its invitation to ASEAN air forces that agreed to join in the festival by featuring several of their military assets, including a C-17 from USAF; a CN-235 from IAF; and a 15-man skydiving team from Brunei,” he said.
“The Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, and Philippine Air Force will join in sky jumps, air exhibitions and in holding kinetic and static displays of military equipment and hardware aimed to promote our roles in security; search and rescue; and disaster response,” he added.
Meanwhile, a high-speed opener using PAF’s S-211 followed by a flag jump will highlight the first day of the event and a series of skydiving exhibitions from the major services are also lined up in the stretch of the festival that closes with a search-and-rescue demonstration, according to Burgos.
The hangars of 600th Air Wing will be made available to provide ramps. Ambulance units with medical teams and a helicopter are also on standby in case of accidents.
“This annual event plays a great role in promoting the Philippine aviation industry and its rich history. I am confident that our participating personnel will do their best both in providing entertainment and security during the festival,” said Burgos, quoting AFP Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Jessie Dellosa.
“This event also provides the AFP with a venue to showcase its skills and capabilities to the people they have sworn to protect and serve,” he added.
The Hot Air Balloon Fiesta, an event that started in 1994, is considered the biggest aviation event in the country.
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7:45 pm | Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

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