WestMinCom sends off marine units slated to strengthen border control external defense14
Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City – September 2, 2022
Western Mindanao Command Chief Lt. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr. spearheaded a send-off ceremony that was accorded to the 4th Marine Brigade (4MBde), Marine Battalion Landing Team 7, and Marine Battalion Landing Team 8 (MBLT8) on Friday, September 2, 2022. The ceremony was held at the 4MBde Headquarters located in Barangay Tandu-Bato, Luuk, Sulu.
After more than six years of deployment and steadfast service to combat terrorism in Sulu, the 4MBde and the MBLT8 are pulled out from the WestMinCom’s joint area of operation and are slated to address the security concerns and strengthen border control and external defense operations in the northern part of the country under the jurisdiction of the North Luzon Command (NolCom) while the MBLT7 is set to augment the troops of either Joint Task Force Tawi-Tawi or Joint Task Force Central.  
During the ceremony, Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. presented the Command Plaque to the 4MBde and MBLT8 in recognition of their valuable and revered achievement that greatly contributed to the accomplishment of the overall mission of the command. The Naval Forces Western Mindanao also presented the Plaque de Merito to the marine units. Deserving officers and personnel were also recognized during the event. 
In his message, Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. said: “For decades, the province of Sulu or “Lupah Sug”, a cradle of distinct cultural heritage and the home of the “Tausugs” had been battled and scarred by political and ideological differences and terrorism. But with the government efforts particularly the Armed Forces of the Philippines and with the unwavering support of the Tausugs, now, Lupah Sug is relatively peaceful and its progress is very evident in its surging economic improvement including its booming tourism industry.”
 WestMinCom sends off marine units slated to strengthen border control external defense8
Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. commended the invaluable contribution of 4MBde to the growing peace and development in Sulu. “The 4th Marine Brigade or previously known as the Philippine Marine Ready Force (PMRF), before it became a probationary marine brigade in June 2019, has been assigned in this province since September 2016 to address the growing concerns over the influence and atrocities perpetrated by the local terrorist groups particularly the Abu Sayyaf Group in the area. The marines in Sulu have accomplished milestones in pursuit of lasting peace and development of the province. The 4MBde has been a beacon of professional soldiers in serving the province of Sulu particularly the island municipalities of the 2nd district. The establishment of a military park in Luuk, one of its tangible accomplishments, has symbolized the synergy between the military, local government unit, and the community. Your efforts and accomplishment in ending terrorism and keeping the community from the influence of violent extremism indeed contributed to the success of the campaign of Joint Task Force Sulu, the WestMinCom, and the AFP as a whole. More importantly, your selfless dedication in serving Lupah Sug has etched a symbol of hope and togetherness in the hearts and minds of the peace-loving Tausugs,” the WestMinCom Commander expressed. 
“Muli, taus-puso akong nagpapasalamat sa inyong dedikasyon at serbisyo upang tuluyang puksain at tuldukan ang karahasan at terorismo sa bahagi ito ng rehiyon. Nawa’y ipagpatuloy ninyo ang inyong nasimulang kahusayan at kagalingan saan mang dako kayo mapunta. Ipagpatuloy niyo rin ang inyong hangaring katiwasayan at kaunlaran sa ating bansa (Once again, I sincerely thank you for your dedication and service to completely eliminate and end violence and terrorism in this part of the region. May you continue the proficiency and competence you have begun wherever you will go. Continue to aspire for security and development in our country),” Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. concluded. 
 WestMinCom sends off marine units slated to strengthen border control external defense7

The send-off ceremony was graced by the presence of Maj. Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio, Commander of Joint Task Force Sulu; Brig. Gen. Arturo Rojas, Deputy Commander for External Defense Operations, WestMinCom; Brig. Gen. Vincent Mark Anthony Blanco III, Commander of the 4th Marine Brigade; Brig. Gen. Eugenio Boquio, Commander of the 1101st Infantry Brigade; Brig. Gen. Giovanni Franza, Commander of the 1102nd Infantry Brigade; Brig.  Gen. Benjamin Batara, Jr., Commander of the 1103rd Infantry Brigade; Col. Adolfo Albalate, Commander for Marine Operations of the Naval Forces Western Mindanao; Col. Wendell Basat, Assistant Chief of Unified Command Staff for Civil-Military Operations, WestMinCom; and Col. Jessie Montoya, Assistant Chief of Unified Command Staff for Operations. 

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