74 new COVID-19 cases reported among overseas Filipinos — DFA

Marje Pelayo   •   July 9, 2020   •   336

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) reported 74 new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection among overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), bringing the total number to 8,762 as of Wednesday (July 8).

Most of the new cases reported are in the Middle East, the DFA said. 

Meanwhile, the total number of OFWs under treatment has reached 2,932.

Nineteen new recoveries were also reported, bringing the total of OFWs who have recovered from the disease to 5,237.

However, 13 new deaths were recorded in the Middle East bringing the total number of COVID-19 fatalities among OFWs to 590.

With the resumption of international flight operations at NAIA Terminal 3 on Wednesday,  the DFA expects a rise in repatriations.

The agency assures its steadfast commitment to effectively facilitating and coordinating the safe return of Filipinos affected by the pandemic.

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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. 

DFA announces coverage of exemptions from temporary suspension of visa

Marje Pelayo   •   August 10, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has announced the coverage of the exemptions from the temporary suspension of visa issuance to foreign nationals. 

Pursuant to Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF- EID) Resolution No. 60 dated July 30, 2020, exempted from the temporary suspension of visa issuance include:

  • Foreign spouses
  • Minor children including those with special needs regardless of age
  • Foreign parents of minor Filipino nationals, including children with special needs regardless of age

The DFA said the Bureau of Immigration (BI) may allow entry of those covered under the above-mentioned exemptions starting Sunday (August 9) provided that they hold valid Philippine visas. 

This includes those who previously enjoyed visa-free privileges. 

Those concerned foreign nationals who wish to enter the Philippines, and fall under any of the mentioned categories, are advised to coordinate with the nearest Embassy or Consulate on the submission of documentary proof issued by Philippine authorities or foreign governments.

The implementation of these exemptions shall be in coordination with the BI and the Civil Aeronautics Board of the implementation.

Together with its Foreign Service Posts, the DFA said it is committed to tirelessly facilitating the concerns and needs of Filipino nationals, whenever and wherever possible, especially in these challenging times.

#DFAAdvisory Exemption of Foreign Spouses, Children and Parents of Filipino Nationals from the Temporary Suspension of…

Posted by Department of Foreign Affairs, Republic of the Philippines on Saturday, 8 August 2020

UPDATE: 24 Filipinos injured, one missing in Beirut blast — DFA

Marje Pelayo   •   August 6, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — In an advisory, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)  on Wednesday (August 5) said 10 of the 11 initially reported missing seafarers have been found safe and accounted for, as reported by the Philippine Embassy in Beirut. 

This recent development leaves one seafarer still missing, the DFA said. 

The 10 seafarers suffered minor injuries and are now with the management of the shipping company Abu Merhi Cruises at Ain el Mraiseh, Beirut.

Meanwhile, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Concerns Dodo Dulay confirmed the latest tally of injured Filipinos in the massive explosion is at 24.

He said most of the injured are household service workers. 

Except for one critical, all injured are in stable condition or with minor wounds, the official said.

Filipino fatalities remain at two and the search for the missing Filipino is ongoing.

The DFA assured that through the Philippine Embassy in Beirut, it will continue to ascertain the conditions of the seafarers and the other Filipinos who were reported hospitalized due to the incident..

The DFA also informs the public that all its Embassy personnel are safe, with no reported physical damage in its premises.

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