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Locsin: DFA to only rely on military intelligence on China’s reported missile tests

'We despise civilian sources'
/ 07:09 PM July 04, 2019
Locsin: DFA to only rely on military intelligence on China’s reported missile tests

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. FILE PHOTO / MALACAÑANG

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will only rely on official intelligence reports given by the military.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. issued this statement on Thursday via Twitter following reports that China has conducted missile tests in the disputed South China Sea last weekend.

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“The DFA relies only on official military intelligence; we despise civilian sources,” he said.

The country’s top diplomat echoed the stand of Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo who said that the Philippine government will conduct its own investigation instead of depending on “whatever source.”

“We work hand in glove with the armed forces because war is conduct of diplomacy by other means, as diplomacy can be the conduct of war with a measure of finesse,” Locsin said.

In a recent news report, Pentagon Spokesman Lt. Col. Dave Eastburn said they were aware of the missile launch from the man-made structures in the Spratly Islands (Kalayaan) in the South China Sea.

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The Pentagon building, located in Washington, DC, is the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense.

Philippine Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana earlier said a probe into the reported missile tests will be conducted.

READ: Lorenzana: Philippines to probe China’s missile tests in South China Sea

Military report

The foreign affairs chief has repeatedly said the DFA will only count on the military’s intelligence report before filing any diplomatic protest over an incident in the contested waterway.

The latest of those incidents was the reported ramming of a Philippine fishing boat by a Chinese vessel at Recto (Reed) Bank in the West Philippine Sea last June 9.

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The incident left 22 Filipino fishermen at sea for hours before they were rescued by a Vietnamese vessel. (Editor: Katherine G. Adraneda)

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