Monday, April 8, 2013

Undetected flight highlights need to upgrade AFP capability

From the Philippine Star (Apr 8): Undetected flight highlights need to upgrade AFP capability

The flight of two unidentified aircraft over Pag-asa Island highlights the need to improve the military’s monitoring capabilities, an official said Monday.

Maj. Gen. Rustico Guerrero, chief of the Palawan-based Armed Forces Western Command, said that while the aircraft were detected by their troops, their capabilities are limited
“The capability upgrade of the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) is continuous because that is exactly what we need to address the minimum credible deterrence,” Guerrero said in an interview.
“We’re banking on the programs for the upgrade of our equipment and that is exactly the interest of security – to ensure that our borders are protected,” he added.
Guerrero said they would continue to fulfill their duty despite their limitations.
“We are on toes. We are continuously monitoring,” he said.
On Thursday, two unidentified aircraft were seen0 passing at high speed and high altitude over Pag-asa in Palawan.
Col. Edgard Arevalo, Navy spokesman on West Philippine Sea issues, said the aircraft were seen at around 9:50 a.m. and were headed north from the southwest.
Pag-asa is the second largest island in the Spratly archipelago, the subject of a long-standing territorial dispute in the region.
Kalayaan, a fifth class municipality in Palawan is located on Pag-asa and is inhabited by civilians and soldiers from the Armed Forces Western Command.
China claims virtually the entire West Philippine Sea while the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia Taiwan and Brunei have overlapping claims.

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