31 Filipinos injured, 4 dead in Beirut blasts — DFA

Marje Pelayo   •   August 7, 2020   •   327

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) through the Philippine Embassy in Beirut on Friday (August 7) announced that two more Filipinos were confirmed dead in the massive explosion in Beirut, Lebanon, bringing the total number of Filipino deaths in the incident to 4.

“We are saddened by the latest turn of developments. The higher figure comes as our Embassy personnel work to ascertain the condition of the Filipinos in its jurisdiction,“ stated Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola.

Aside from the fatalities, the Philippine Embassy in Beirut also confirmed that the number of injured has increased to 31.

“Two Filipinos remain in critical condition. They are confined and are being monitored at Rizk Hospital,” reported Philippine Embassy Beirut Charge d’affaires Ajeet Panemanglor.

Meanwhile, there is no update yet on the whereabouts of one household service worker who remains missing.

“Our Embassy officials shall continue to ascertain the condition of our community in Beirut. The DFA reaffirms its commitment to bring the much needed support and assistance to our kababayans specially at this hour of need,” Undersecretary Arriola concluded.

386 Filipinos repatriated from Lebanon to arrive in PH Monday – DFA

Robie de Guzman   •   August 17, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Over 300 overseas Filipino workers (OFW) repatriated from Lebanon are set to arrive in the country on Monday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.

In a statement, the DFA said the OFWs will land at Terminal 3 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport via a chartered flight.

The flight will also carry the remains of eight Filipinos, four of whom were killed in the recent explosions in Beirut Port.

DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. is expected to be present at the airport to receive the repatriates, the department said.

Other officials who are likely to join the Secretary are Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Concerns Brigido J. Dulay, Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs Sarah Lou Y. Arriola, and DND Undersecretary Cesar B. Yano, the DFA added.

DFA: Initial repatriation flights from Beirut to Manila set on August 17

Marje Pelayo   •   August 12, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Following the sudden resignation of the Lebanon government, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has intensified its operations to repatriate Filipinos in the country immediately.

“We are not leaving anyone behind,” declared Migrant Workers Affairs Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola.

Arriola noted that the Department and its embassy in Beirut are taking all necessary actions to guarantee the safety of overseas Filipinos who are still in Lebanon. 

“More steps will be implemented in the coming days to see this through,” added the Undersecretary.

The first of the DFA chartered-flights from Beirut is expected to land in Manila on August 17 with some 400 overseas Filipinos expected to join the flight.

“This repatriation will be the first in a number of repatriation flights that the DFA will mount to bring home our kababayans who want to come home,” Arriola said.

“These flights shall be free and at no cost to our overseas Filipinos from Lebanon,” she added. 

According to the DFA, around 31,000 Filipinos still remain in Lebanon to date. 

Last week, two massive explosions rocked the capital city of Beirut which injured thousands and killed more than a hundred of its population.

The tragedy further plunged Lebanon into a deep political crisis that led to the resignation of its national government. 

Filipinos hurt in Beirut blast now at 47 – DFA

Robie de Guzman   •   August 10, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Monday reported that the number of Filipinos who suffered injuries following the powerful blasts in Beirut, Lebanon has climbed to 47.

In a statement, the DFA said it received a report on five additional Filipino nationals who were injured in the explosions.

“We are still thankful that the injuries sustained by our kababayans are not life-threatening. We also thank our Embassy personnel for taking prompt action,” DFA Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola said.

The department also said it is now preparing to bring home this week the remains of four Filipinos who died in the blast.

A chartered flight will also be facilitated for the repatriation of some 400 Filipino workers in Lebanon who wish to return to the Philippines.

Arriola said the cost of the repatriation will be shouldered by the government.

On August 4, two explosions occurred at the port of the city of Beirut that resulted in more than 100 deaths and 5,000 injuries.

The blasts were believed to have been linked to more than 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrate which have been stored in a warehouse for about six years since it was confiscated from an abandoned ship.

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