AFP: No fresh deployment of troops to Spratlys
MANILA, Philippines - There is no truth to the report that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has deployed 800 Marines to guard the disputed Spratly Islands, which is also being claimed by China.
AFP spokesman Col. Arnulfo Burgos said the personnel, numbering to around 1000, have been stationed there for several years now long before the tension in the islands escalated.
Only 80 personnel were deployed recently and had nothing to do with China’s building of Sansha, a newly formed city in Spratlys.
Agence France Presse earlier quoted Lieutenant General Juancho Sabban as saying: "These two battalions which arrived recently will be augmenting protection of our islands.”
Burgos said Sabban may have been misquoted. – with reports from Gretchen Malalad, ABS-CBN News