PRESIDENT Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. at the 61st founding anniversary of the Special Forces Regiment (Airborne) of the Philippine Army at Fort Magsaysay in Palayan City, Nueva Ecija on June 25, 2023. — PPA POOL

PRESIDENT Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. on Sunday vowed to modernize a Philippine Army special force unit, citing “complex threats” faced by the country.

“Your mastery of unconventional warfare strategies becomes all the more relevant and significant in view of the complex threats that our nation now faces,” Mr. Marcos Jr. told the Army’s Special Forces Regiment (Airborne) or SFRA during its 61st founding anniversary.

“We assure you of the administration’s unassailable commitment and that of your commander-in-chief’s support in all of your undertakings, strengthening your capabilities and ensuring your welfare and that of your families,” he added.

Mr. Marcos said the government has adopted the Riverine Operations Equipment project to improve the capabilities of the Army special force unit in riverine operations, referring to the insertion and extraction of special force troops for rescue and other special military operations.

He cited the unit’s “mastery of unconventional warfare strategies,” which he said has become significant and relevant “in view of the complex threat that our nation now faces.”

The special force unit was established in 1962.

“Extensively trained in unconventional warfare and equipped with various tools and capabilities, the members of the SFRA have proven themselves valuable in both wartime and peacetime operations,” Mr. Marcos said. 

“From combating terrorist groups in the country to supporting peacekeeping operations overseas, we have demonstrated competence and professionalism even in the most challenging times,” he added.

Mr. Marcos acknowledged the special force unit for its search and rescue operations in March that led to the rescue of 316 people from a burning passenger marine vessel of Aleson Shipping Lines bound for Jolo Port. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza