THE Philippine and Malaysian navies have started a joint exercise against foreign and local terror groups exploiting the seas shared by both nations.
Commodore Rufino Lopez Jr., commander of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao, said the conduct of the Malaysian-RP Exercise (Marex) is also aimed at enhancing the capability of both naval forces in confronting new threats.
The Philippines and Malaysia are often referred to as backdoor neighbors.
People from Mindanao, particularly those in the western area, regularly travel to Malaysia via Sandakan or Sabah.
The vast seas bordering the two countries have also provided avenues for pirates, smugglers and criminals to carry out their acts because these are not well-guarded.
“We recognize our limited capability and one way of strengthening our porous border is the timely exchange of intelligence information,” Lopez told reporters here during Wednesday’s opening of Marex.