Philippines

Lorenzana says AFP incapable of defending territories in WPS

By Francis T. Wakefield

In an interview over ANC, Lorenzana said the military is doing its best to upgrade its facilities, especially on Pag-asa Island, Palawan, to enable military planes to land there.

“At present, you know we don’t have any capabilities to even, just to demonstrate to others that we are capable of defending our territory because we are not capable,” Lorenzana said.

“We don’t have the capital ships, we don’t have the weapons. Our sole airstrip in Pag-asa is still very short and it is unpaved so we’re trying to pave it so that we can bring in our aircraft anytime,” he added.

The repair of the 1.3-kilometer runway of Rancudo Airfield on Pag-asa Island started last month based on a report by the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative.

Satellite images taken last May 17 showed dredging equipment on the western edge of the runway that collapsed into the sea years ago.

“Because at present planes can only land there if there were five days of sunshine, because if it is soggy it cannot land. That’s one of the improvements that we are doing. So it will take some time for us to be ready to defend our territories the way we should defend it in the first place,” Lorenzana said.

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