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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Philippines rejects China’s claims on joint air patrols

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The Philippine government through National Security Adviser Eduardo Año rejected China’s narrative regarding the recent joint air patrol with the United States in the West Philippine Sea.

“Our engagements with the United States are well within our rights as a sovereign and independent nation, aimed at promoting maritime security and upholding international law,” Año said in a statement released Wednesday, Feb. 21.

He emphasized that the Philippine Air Force (PAF) and the United States Pacific Air Force (PACAF) conducted “a lawful and routine exercise aimed at enhancing interoperability between allied forces and promoting regional peace and security in the Indo-Pacific region.”

Año urged China to respect Philippine sovereignty and international law, highlighting the importance of established legal frameworks for peaceful relations and cooperation. He reiterated the Philippines’ commitment to partnerships that strengthen their defense capabilities and ensure regional stability.

“The joint air patrol with the US is part of our longstanding defense cooperation,” Año said.

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“We will continue to work closely with our friends, allies, and partners to ensure a secure and prosperous future for all nations in the Indo-Pacific region,” he added.

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