Manila, Philippines – Leaders from Germany and Czech Republic on Thursday discussed with Defense Secretary c Jr. the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) defense requirements in dealing with the challenges to the country’s maritime domain.

Secretary Teodoro first met German Federal Parliament member Dr. Johann Wadephul at his office where the two discussed common security challenges affecting both countries, including the West Philippine Sea (WPS), said DND spokesperson Director Arsenio Andolong in a statement on Friday.

Andolong said that Teodoro laid down the Philippine defense capability development priorities, highlighting area denial, maritime domain awareness, air defense, and cybersecurity in the AFP modernization program.

Under the modernization program Horizon-3, the AFP intends to acquire more naval ships, attack aircraft, a submarine and other sophisticated armaments to boost defense and security capabilities amid maritime tensions unfolding in South China Sea brought by China’s aggressive encroachment.

During the meeting with the German leader, Teodoro put forward the idea of strengthening a bilateral defense relation between the two countries, as the Department plans to set up a resident Philippine Defense and Armed Forces attaché (PhilDAFA) post in Berlin.

In regard to the WPS, Teodoro appreciated Germany’s firm support to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), pertaining to Philippine sovereign rights within its 200 Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).