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Japan Plans to Lease Five Trainer Planes to Philippines

Tokyo would provide Manila with maintenance support of the TC-90s and would train the personnel for the aircraft, according to the Japanese Defense Ministry.

Spratly group of islands in the South China Sea, west of Palawan - Sputnik International
Philippines to Lease Five Japan Planes for Patrols in Disputed S China Sea
TOKYO (Sputnik) — The Japanese Defense Ministry confirmed in a statement on Monday it plans to lease up to five TC-90 training aircraft to the Philippines.

In March, Philippine President Benigno Aquino said that his country plans to lease five aircraft from Japan to patrol the South China Sea, which contains a number of islands and territories disputed by many countries.

"The sides admit that defense cooperation between Japan and Philippines is essential for peace, stability and prosperity in the region… we confirm that cooperation efforts will include the following: up to five aircraft of the MSDF [Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force] will be transferred to the [Philippine] Navy," the statement published after a phone call between Japanese Defense Minister Gen Nakatani with his Philippine counterpart Voltaire Gazmin said.

Beechcraft Super King Air 200 taking off - Sputnik International
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It was added in the statement that Tokyo would also provide Manila with maintenance support of the TC-90s and would train the personnel for the aircraft.

The South China Sea is home to a number of islands and maritime areas, disputed by Brunei, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. China tries to expand its influence over the area triggering concerns of other countries in the region and paving the way for their military buildup.

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