Modern Amphibious Units will Counter Narcoterrorism in the VRAEM
By Dialogo February 14, 2013
On February 7, Peruvian Ministry of Defense Pedro Cateriano Bellido introduced two modern Hovercraft amphibious units in the city of Pucallpa that will be used for surveillance and support of the Armed Forces in the fight against narcoterrorism in the Apurímac, Ene and Mantaro Rivers Valley (VRAEM).
After the opening ceremony, Minister Cateriano boarded one of these amphibious units and sailed through the Ucayali River, where he was able to verify its operational capabilities, as well as how well the officers that will counter narcoterrorism in the VRAEM are trained. The main naval authority also joined Cateriano on the units, which later took them through the premises of the “BAP Clavero.”
Afterwards, the authorities went to Pucallpa Naval Station, where a ceremony was held to commemorate members of personnel who died in the line of duty at Ucayali Front.
Once the ceremony ended, the General Director of Companies and Coast Guards, Vice Admiral Edmundo Deville Del Campo gave a presentation about illegal mining in the Amazon. Then, Fourth Naval Zone Commander, Rear Admiral Hugo Verán Moreno spoke about the mission, its current situation and the goals within the area of responsibility.
During his visit, the minister of defense stated that “we are putting two Hovercraft vessels that will join the fight against drug trafficking and terrorism, in service.” Furthermore, he reported that two more units will be added soon, both of which are currently under construction.
He added that “in this way, the government is showing its commitment to provide the Armed Forces with the best tools, so they can perform their constitutional role of defending the country against other threats, such as terrorism.”
It is important to consider that these amphibious Hovercraft units have aluminum armor and special air mattresses, so they can float and glide to emerge on either maritime or land surfaces, overcoming all kinds of obstacles.
With a capacity to lodge 20 combatants, these vehicles can reach up to 35 knots. The units assigned to the VRAEM will be armored and armed, and they have night vision capabilities. In addition, they can go into an area, perform rescue tasks in support of a helicopter, for example, and then return to the water. According to technical specifications, their revering maneuverability remains operational throughout the year, under any weather conditions.