Pre-designated military observation posts to augment CAAP radars in securing Pope Francis visit

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The Air Force announced that military observation posts on the ground will augment Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) radars scanning the skies for hostile aerial threats that may attempt to disrupt Pope Francis’ activities in the country.

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This was announced by Philippine Air Force (PAF) spokesperson Lt. Col. Enrico Canaya in a message to the PNA.

He said that CAAP radars and pre-designated military observation posts in the ground will vector or direct patrolling S-211 jet trainers for possible threats in the air.

“S-211s have no airborne radar so we will rely on information from the CAAP and pre-designated military observation posts in the ground,” Canaya added.

The PAF earlier announced that it will be implementing a three nautical mile “no-fly zone” radius on all areas where the Pontiff is expected to have an engagement.

These areas include Metro Manila, Palo and Tacloban in the Eastern Visayas.

“We will provide air cover, we will strictly enforce the three nautical miles radius ‘no-fly zone, we are employing different types of aircraft from S-211s, helicopter gunships, and even ground based anti-aircraft guns, for air cover,” he said.

Detection and intercept of unidentified aircrafts will extend from up to 10 nautical miles and beyond, Canaya added.

“We have a total of 26 PAF and naval aircraft involved in the air operation, sari-saring mission, lahat na ito, transpo, air cover, admin support, this are all part of our security measures,” he explained.

Canaya said that PAF can and will intercept any unidentified aircraft if needed.

“But we are exercising prudence in our judgement because we are concerned also of the security of populace, we will see to it that there is no collateral damage,” Canaya said. PNA

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