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Sweden’s defense chief has expressed alarm over Beijing’s repeated dangerous maneuvers against Philippine vessels in the South China Sea, saying such actions threaten global security, undermine stability and underscore the need to invest “for our security and freedom.”

Defense Minister Pål Jonson spoke Thursday night in a diplomatic reception in Manila for Sweden’s national day after meeting his Philippine counterpart, Gilberto Teodoro Jr., on expanding defense relations. Sweden is one of the possible sources of supersonic fighter jets that the Philippines plans to acquire as its military shifts focus from decades of fighting communist and Muslim insurgencies to territorial defense.

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