President Rodrigo Duterte’s aide yesterday said there was nothing unusual on the second landing of a Chinese military plane in Davao City, adding those who are highlighting the landing were merely sowing intrigue.
A Philippine Air Force unit earlier confirmed the aircraft landed in in Davao Saturday afternoon.
Special Assistant to the President Bong Go said the Chinese military aircraft was “received, processed and cleared by relevant Philippine agencies” and was allowed “out of courtesy.”
“I think pangalawa na ito na nag-refuel sa Davao. I think, kung mayroon man today, ‘di ko pa po nabalitaan,” Go told reporters.
For his part, Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque yesterday said the Chinese plane spotted landing in Davao City on Saturday had to refuel.
“Same as first. Refuelling stop,” Roque said in a text message to reporters.
“All licenses, permits and protocols issued and observed,” he added.
The plane was the second Chinese military aircraft in three weeks to land at the Davao International Airport.
It landed past noon on Saturday amid the supposed militarization of disputed areas in the West Philippine Sea.
Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano said the latest landing of the Chinese plane as “unusual.”
“We have no formal military agreements with China which makes landings like that unusual especially if high defense officials were not aware. On one hand, we have an existing visiting forces agreement with Australia & the US,” Alejano posted on Twitter.
Go also said Alejano could ask military officials themselves if there was anything amiss about the landing of the Chinese military plane in Davao.
“Masyado n’yong iniintriga ‘yung gobyerno natin,” Go said.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana was quoted by the government-run Philippine News Agency saying that it was the same Chinese aircraft that landed in Davao on June 8.