China objects to Korea's warship donation to Philippines - "small token" for Filipinos' sacrifice in the Korean war

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The Pohang-class Corvette PCC 758 Geyongju similar to one that is being donated to the Philippine Navy. Poder Naval

MANILA, Philippines — China aired its protest last week against South Korea's plan to donate 1,200-ton patrol boat and landing vessel to the Philippines, a major South Korean newspaper said.

The Chosun Ilbo reported a meeting between Korean Foreign Minister Kim Kwan-jin and Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin where the two officials discussed a prior request from the Chinese Embassy in Seoul to cancel the donation.

China's intervention comes amid a maritime spat with the Philippines over South China Sea areas and ahead of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit with China in Nay Pyi Taw, Burma where leaders were expected to highlight the sea row.

Earlier reports cited Korea's vow to retire a Pohang-class guided missile corvette and give it to the Philippines as a "small token" for Filipinos' sacrifice in the Korean war.

The Philippines has increased its defense budget to allow new acquisitions in an effort to modernize its military and attain a minimum credible defense posture under the Aquino administration. - Camille Diola - philStar

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