AFP chief-of-staff Lt. Gen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro (Screengrab from RTVM)

MANILA – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is more than willing to carry out its mandate to protect the country and its people in line with President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr.'s declaration that not even one square inch of the nation's territory will be surrendered to any foreign power.

Newly-appointed AFP chief-of-staff Lt. Gen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro, reiterated this during his first-ever command conference Wednesday.

"We only do what is required of us to do and what is important is we are able to perform our mandate to protect (the state and) our people," said AFP acting spokesperson, Col. Medel Aguilar, when asked whether this policy of the President was discussed.

Bacarrro took over the helm of the AFP from Gen. Andres Centino last Aug. 8.

Asked how this stance will be carried out, Aguilar said, "there are other instruments of national power that can be utilized by the President" for this purpose.

"So I think the strategy must be crafted carefully but that is beyond us, that is beyond the Armed Forces," he added.

During his first State Of the Nation Address on July 25, Marcos vowed to protect the country's territory from other threats.

"I will not preside over any process that will abandon even one square inch of territory of the Republic of the Philippines to any foreign power," he said. (PNA)