AFP NOT on red alert amid territorial disputes with China

June 28, 2024


A text claiming that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is on red alert status amid the heightened territorial dispute with China is an old hoax. The chain message has been circulating online as early as 2021.

Resurfaced this June as tensions with China in the West Philippine Sea (WPS) continue to escalate, the post further claims that war supplies from countries have landed at the Clark Air Base. The text in the circulating screenshot reads:

“Sent by Archbishop Martinez: FROM GENERAL DAVID ‘sabihin po sa lahat na magpray para sa bansa. Naka red Alert ngayon ang AFP gawa ng galit ang China, Maingay ngayon dto sa Clark dahil landing ng mga gamit pandigma from France, USA, Japan at Australia para tumulong kung sakali gumera ang China at Arab country (Tell everyone to pray for the country. The AFP is now on red alert because China is angry, Clark is noisy today because of the landing of war materials from France, USA, Japan and Australia to help in case China and Arab countries go to war). Pls ask all to pray. Pls pass to all PRAYER WARRIORS.”

This is fake. The AFP has disowned the text and clarified that they are not on alert status at the moment.

VERA FILES FACT CHECK - THE FACTS: The text claiming the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is on red alert amid heightened tension with China is a hoax. The AFP has disowned the chain message that has been circulating as early as 2021.VERA FILES FACT CHECK - THE FACTS: The text claiming the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is on red alert amid heightened tension with China is a hoax. The AFP has disowned the chain message that has been circulating as early as 2021.In a June 26 advisory on its official Facebook (FB) page, the AFP reiterated that this announcement attributed to a certain “General David” is fake and has been circulating as early as 2021.

“A screenshot of a message allegedly from ‘General David’ about the AFP being on red alert status and receiving war equipment is OLD and FAKE. This misinformation has been debunked previously in 2021,” a part of the advisory read.

The AFP and the Department of National Defense previously issued statements debunking the same text, as reported by other news organizations. It circulated in the midst of rumors of a destabilization plot against former president Rodrigo Duterte over his stance on the WPS issue.

A similar hoax about the military being placed on red alert also circulated in 2016 after the arbitral win of the Philippines against China.

The text from 2021 resurfaced days after the June 17 incident where the China Coast Guard again blocked and harassed the AFP forces in a humanitarian rotation and resupply operation to the BRP Sierra Madre in Ayungin Shoal.

The countries mentioned in the old hoax – the United States, France, Japan and Australia, have expressed concerns over China’s dangerous and illegal actions against the Philippine vessels.

VERA Files Fact Check has flagged other false information online related to the West Philippine Sea dispute. (Read OLD photos claimed as foreign warships headed to WPS MISLEAD)

The text has been circulated by several FB users and within messaging platforms.



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VERA Files is a nonstock, nonprofit, independent media organization. Founded in March 2008, it is published by veteran Filipino journalists taking a deeper look into current Philippine issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”

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