(Eagle News)–Chinese warships have been spotted passing through Philippine territorial waters anew, the military said on Wednesday, Aug. 14.

Western Mindanao Command chief Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said the two Chinese warships were first spotted by the Navy in Sibutu Strait in July.

He said they were spotted three more times in August.

He said all of these visits were unannounced, and the warships’ identification systems were turned off.

“Hindi naman sila hostile. Ang ano lang dun, it was not an innocent passage,” he said, noting  the ships’ curved trajectory, apparently after sensing the presence of the Philippine military.

Earlier, the Philippine government filed a diplomatic protest over the presence of two Chinese survey ships within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone. 

Another diplomatic protest was filed by the Philippines over the swarming of Chinese ships near Pag-Asa Island.

President Rodrigo Duterte has said he would raise the South China Sea issue with China President Xi Jinping when  he visits China this month.