A Russian anti-submarine naval ship and a large sea tanker arrived late on Tuesday for a four-day goodwill visit to the Philippines from Jan. 2 to 7 and have been welcomed by the Philippine Navy.

Both vessels docked at the Manila’s south harbor with its crews expected to demonstrate Russian Marines anti-terrorism capability and will also hold talks, said Rear Admiral Eduard Mikhailov, head of the Flotilla of the Russian Navy Pacific Fleet.

Commodore Francisco Gabidao, the Philippine naval combat engineering brigade, walk past the Russian Navy vessel, Admiral Tributs, a large anti-submarine ship.

“Our governments will maybe discuss in some period of time the possibilities of our maritime exercises,” Mikhailov told a news conference, adding Russia has been holding drills with the Indonesian navy.

“The biggest problem now in the world is terrorism and piracy, and all our exercises we have, for example, with you, we will have to fight these problems and we will show you what we can do and we will see what you can do and show us,” he added as the Russian navy showcased the warships.

Admiral Tributs and sea tanker Boris Butoma are part of Russia’s Pacific fleet that is headed by Rear Admiral Eduard Mikhailov, the Deputy Commander of Flotilla.

Members of the Russian Navy salute on board the Russian vessel

Mikhailov said they were willing to help train Philippine counterparts to fight piracy and terrorism and they hope to foster stronger security in the region.

The visiting Russians would also do courtesy calls, tour historical places within Manila and Cavite, aside from conducting capability demonstration and goodwill games.

A spokesman for the Philippine Navy told reporters this is the first official interaction with the Russian navy, an arch rival of its former colonial master and closest ally in the region, the United States. -JCE.