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MANILA, Philippines – Two more South Korean FA-50 fighter jets procured by the Philippine Air Force (PAF) have arrived.
They were formally turned over on Thursday, December 1, at the Haribon Hangar, Air Force City in Clark Airbase. The ceremony was led by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
The jets were given a water cannon salute.
It is the second batch of FA-50s received by the PAF, bringing the total to four.
The previous Aquino administration procured 12 fighter jets for P18 billion. The rest are expected to be delivered in 2017.
The Philippine Air Force lost its fighter jet capability in 2005 after it retired the last of its US-made F-5 fighter jets.
The FA-50s were acquired as the previous administration focused on territorial defense amid rising tension in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
President Rodrigo Duterte, who has made pronouncements to put in the sidelines the West Philippine Sea dispute, has criticized the purchase of the fighter jets. – Rappler.com