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Philippine Navy welcomes 'most powerful' warship BRP Conrado Yap.

| 2019

The Philippine Navy welcomed its most powerful warship yet, the Pohang-class corvette BRP Conrado Yap (PS-39), with an official ceremony at the Manila South Harbor on Tuesday, August 20.

Philippines Navy welcomes most powerful warship BRP Conrado Yap 925 001 The BRP Conrado Yap, the Philippine Navy’s “most powerful’ ship, was donated by the South Korean government. (Picture source: Philippine Navy)

Named after the most decorated Philippine Army soldier killed in action in the Korean War in 1951, the Conrado Yap consists of two Oto Melara 76mm/62 calibre Compact naval guns, two Otobreda 40mm L/70 twin naval guns, two Mk. 32 triple torpedo launchers, six M2HB Browning .50 calibre machine guns, two Mk.9 depth charge racks, giving it anti-surface, anti-air, and anti-submarine warfare capabilities.

The newly acquired vessel will also be used as a platform to train the Navy ahead of the arrival of the country's first frigate warships in 2020.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, who led the welcome ceremony, lauded the ship's acquisition, saying he has long believed that the Philippines needs a strong navy, and the BRP Conrado Yap is a step toward that goal, which remains a long shot for the Philippine Navy.

The recent series of Chinese warship incursions into Philippine territorial waters highlights this need, Lorenzana said.

"The frequency has increased also, so it's very alarming why so many navy ships of the Chinese are passing through Sibutu Strait. My question is, where are they coming from? Where are they going?" the defense chief added.

If he had his way, Lorenzana said he would deploy the new warship to Palawan and the Sulu Sea, where the Chinese naval vessels were sighted by Philippine troops.

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