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MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Air Force on Monday announced that the first two FA-50 Golden Eagle fighter jets would be arriving in the country on Friday. The fighter jets would be touching down at Clark airbase at exactly 10 a.m. The two arriving fighter jets will be piloted by Korean airmen.

Philippine Air Force commanding General Jeffrey Delgado will lead the welcome ceremony for the fighter jets while DND Sec. Voltaire Gazmin together with senior officials of Korea Aerospace Industries will grace the occasion. The Philippine government last year procured 12 units of FA-50 “Golden Eagle” to Korea Aerospace Industries for Php18.9 billion. The fighter jets would be gradually delivered through 2015-17.

The jets would bring back PAF into the jet age after retiring the F-5 in 2005 although these are not yet combat-ready. But the aircraft’s would be a big boost to the capability of the Philippine Air Force especially in patrolling the country’s airspace. PAF on its part has set aside Php5.5 billion for the acquisition of jet munitions and missiles. The jets will undergo a technical inspection, including an “acceptance flight,” before being formally turned over to the Air Force, Canaya said. The new PAF FA-50 fighter jets will be publicly seen on a fly-by sortie on the AFP’s anniversary on Dec. 30 in Camp Aguinaldo.

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