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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

China infiltrating key PH sectors, says AFP

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Media, schools, business being targetted—Brawner

China is infiltrating various sectors in the country, including the academe and local government units, Armed Forces chief of staff Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. said.

“They are slowly entering our country and trying to influence various sectors in our society, including the education sector, business, even the media, and local government units,” Brawner said in a press briefing at Camp Aguinaldo after a command conference attended by President Marcos Thursday.

Manila Standard sought the Chinese Embassy in the Philippines for comment but it has yet to give a statement as of press time.

Brawner said China is also allegedly using POGOs to gain entry into the Philippines.

Brawner said Beijing is reportedly doing the infiltration through a “United Front Works” strategy.

“Our counteraction against their United Front Works is that we are going to try to gather information from all of these and then give the proper agency the right kind of information,” he said.

“For instance, what we did in operations against illegal POGO establishments – those that were legal POGOs but suddenly became illegal because of other activities they are doing within the confines of their structures. That’s what we are addressing,” he added.

Brawner said China has also been using fake news as a tactic, which the AFP is countering with its West Philippine Sea MULAT communication plan.

“We need to awaken and be aware of what’s happening internally in our country. Hopefully, our fellow countrymen will adopt it. The West Philippine Sea is our ocean, our rights, and our future. What we are doing is not just for the present but also for the future generations of the Philippines,” Brawner said.

Earlier, Senator Risa Hontiveros raised the possibility of Chinese military spies securing Philippine citizenship through fraudulent means.

National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) director Ricardo de Leon said all information are being validated, including the possibility that POGOs may have been China’s “Trojan horse.”

Cruz noted that a communication equipment confiscated during a POGO raid in Pasay City had foreign characters, which experts said may have been used to directly communicate with China.

Suspended Bamban Mayor Alice Guo, who is being linked to a POGO raided in Tarlac, was also accused of being a Chinese spy or “asset.”

She has denied the allegation, but the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) confirmed the mayor and Chinese passport holder Guo Hua Ping have the same fingerprints.

Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez also called on the Department of Foreign Affairs to be “on the lookout for Trojan horses” after the Bureau of Immigration disclosed that only one in three Cagayan-based Chinese granted student visas are currently enrolled in a university in the province.

Of the 1,516 Chinese granted student visas as endorsed by a major university in Cagayan, only 485 are currently enrolled, of which only 96 were attending classes, Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco said.

“Let us have a more comprehensive and stringent vetting of Chinese visa applicants for the sake of peace and order in the country, and our national security. Let us be on the lookout for Trojan horses among them,” Rodriguez said.

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