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PH to probe China missile test

/ 05:30 AM July 05, 2019

Malacañang has directed concerned agencies to investigate China’s alleged test-firing of ballistic missiles in the disputed South China Sea.

Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo declined to comment on reports that China tested antiship ballistic missiles, saying the government preferred to look into the matter first.

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“We will investigate and then we will make our official stand. We will not rely on the say-so of whatever source,” Panelo said in a press briefing on Thursday.

Pressed if the Philippines will ask China to explain the alleged test-firing of missiles, he added: “We will investigate on our own. We will do it our way.”

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The Palace made the remarks amid reports that China tested several antiship ballistic missiles in the disputed waters over the weekend.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said he had no first-hand knowledge of the missile launch, adding that the Department of National Defense would conduct its own inquiry first.

Washington said it was aware of the missile launch from China’s artificial islands in the South China Sea.

Asked if it is possible for China to have indeed carried out the test-firing despite the ongoing territorial row, Panelo said: “Whether that’s possible or not, we will have to wait for the inquiry.”

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