MANILA — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Thursday denied reports that one of its planes was downed by a Chinese ship while flying to Pagasa Island.
“We strongly deny that any of our military planes was fired upon by a Chinese vessel while flying to Pag-asa Island to pick a patient. Firing incident in the West Philippine Sea is a serious matter that must not be subject to malicious rumors,” said AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc.
“We confirm that Western Command (WESCOM) was requested and scheduled to pick up a patient named Chito Pastor using Nomad plane from Pagasa Island today (Thursday), however, they were not able to provide air assets due to technical problems,” he noted.
Instead, WESCOM allowed the relatives of the patient to send a Piper 30 civilian plane to evacuate the patient to Puerto Princesa City at 1 p.m. Thursday, Cabunoc stressed.