‘Concerning’: AFP confirms presence of China aircraft carrier in Philippine Sea

/ 02:28 PM July 10, 2024

WPS: China’s aircraft carrier presence off Luzon deemed ‘innocent passage’

This undated handout image released by Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense on April 24, 2023 shows the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) aircraft carrier Shandong sailing in waters some 120 nautical miles of southeast Taiwan. FILE PHOTO/Agence France-Presse

MANILA, Philippines — A Chinese aircraft carrier was deployed in the Philippine Sea, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said on Wednesday.

AFP spokesperson Col. Francel Margareth Padilla described the deployment of a Chinese carrier strike group in the area as “concerning.”

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“The Armed Forces of the Philippines notes the deployment of a Chinese carrier strike group in the Philippine Sea with concern,” Padilla in a statement.

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“The AFP remains committed to safeguarding our maritime interests and ensuring the security of our nation’s territorial waters through continued vigilance,” Padilla said.

READ: West Philippine Sea: Chinese aircraft carrier spotted off Luzon

Padilla made the statement as Japan’s Joint Staff Office reported that the People’s Liberation Army-Navy (PLA-N) Shandong’s carrier strike group operated in the Philippine Sea as part of annual drills conducted by China and Russia, according to a USNI report on Wednesday.

AFP public affairs chief Col. Xerxes Trinidad confirmed receiving reports about the bilateral drills.

“We have received reports of a bilateral China-Russia exercise in the Philippine Sea,” Trinidad said in a statement.

READ: WPS: China’s aircraft carrier presence off Luzon deemed ‘innocent passage’

Trinidad said the AFP continues to monitor their activity.

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“What they do in the high seas is being monitored,” he said. “We will continue to monitor this situation to ensure PH sovereign rights are not violated.”

Late last month, Shandong passed about 200 nautical miles away from Luzon in South China Sea, in a move deemed by the Philippine Navy as “innocent passage.”

TAGS: Armed Forces of the Philippines, China

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