AFP: Nothing irregular in second landing of Chinese military plane in Davao
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said there is “nothing irregular” in the reported landing of the second Chinese military aircraft in Davao City.
“This is the same aircraft that previously landed in Davao City. It underwent a process according to a record from the Department of National Defense (DND). It was on its way to New Zealand to attend the Sky Train 2018 exercise,” AFP spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo said in a press briefing Monday.
China requested the Philippine government to land the planes on April 23. The first landing in Davao City happened last June 8, which sparked concerns amid China’s militarization of the West Philippine Sea.
Photos of the second landing last June 23 also circulated over social media.
Arevalo said that the requests were only made through the assistant secretary-level of the DND, which is why Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana was unaware of the previous landing.
“What we’re saying is these landings of aircraft had proper permissions. It complied with the process. The landing was for refueling purposes only and departed after that. So there is nothing irregular to worry about it,” he said.
Arevalo added that on a yearly average, the military has recorded 70 foreign aircraft that landed in different airports and 25 vessels made port visits. /ee
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