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Malacañang ‘disturbed’ by Kuwait’s expulsion of PH Envoy

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, April 26th, 2018

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque


MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque has admitted that Malacañang is perplexed over the recent decision of the government of Kuwait to expel Philippine envoy Ambassador Renato Pedro Villa and declared him “persona non grata.”

The decision came after Philippine Embassy staff rescued some distressed Filipino workers in Kuwait which the latter claimed as “undiplomatic.”

“We would like to reiterate the statement of the secretary of foreign affairs that the palace is disturbed by the recent developments involving the recall of our ambassador to Kuwait Ambassador villa,” the Secretary said.

Roque said prior to the controversy, the administration was confident that everything was settled after President Rodrigo Duterte’s meeting with Kuwaiti Ambassador to the Philippines Saleh Ahmad Althwaikh.

Despite the tension, Malacañang still hopes that the agreement between the two countries will be signed to ensure the protection and welfare of Filipino workers in Kuwait.

Also, Roque said the Palace remains positive that the relationship between the two countries will get back to normal in due time.

We hope that this is Kuwait’s way of expressing its anger for which SFA Allan Cayetano had already apologized. We believed and hope that the passage of time will heal all wounds and will lead to normalize ties,” Roque said.

While the Philippines’ top diplomat in Kuwait is directed to return to the country within the week, Roque hopes that the International Humanitarian Law will protect OFWs in Kuwait. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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2 Filipino workers killed in Saudi fire

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018

Google Map: Saudi Arabia


Two overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) were killed in a blaze that struck their  construction site in Saudi Arabia early Sunday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said in a statement released Monday.

The victims were identified as Jessie Alata Pacetes and Reynaldo Barroga Castro, both heavy equipment drivers and operators employed by a major Saudi construction company that was working on a road project in Najran.

Consul General Edgar Badajos said the two victims died in their sleeping quarters at their jobsite located some 60 kilometers from Najran.

The Department of Foreign Affairs expressed its sympathies to the families of the victims.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the loved ones of our two kababayan who lost their lives in the tragedy,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter S. Cayetano said after he was informed of the incident.

He added that the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah has sent a team in Najran to work out arrangements with the employer for the immediate repatriation of the remains of the victims and secure whatever benefits that are due them.

Although the fire was believed to have been caused by faulty electrical wiring, the Philippine Consulate is seeking confirmation from local authorities on the real cause of the fire. — UNTV News & Rescue

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PHL totally lifts OFW deployment ban to Kuwait

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, May 17th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Overseas Filipino workers


MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday, May 16, directed Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III to totally lift the deployment ban of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to Kuwait.

In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the directive was in line with the recommendation of Special Envoy to Kuwait Abdullah Mama-o.

In a text message to UNTV, the Labor Secretary confirmed that he received the order from the President though he did not give further details.

Last week, the Philippine government ordered the partial lifting of the ban on skilled and semi-skilled workers to Kuwait following the signing of the agreement on the protection of Filipino workers in the Gulf State. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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Russia eyes model employment contract for OFWs

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 16th, 2018

(L-R) Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Alan Peter Cayetano and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov


MOSCOW, Russia – The Russian government is considering the creation of an agreement with the Philippines on the welfare and protection of Overseas Filipino Workers.

During his visit to Moscow, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano on Tuesday, May 15, announced the positive developments in his meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Cayetano confirmed that the Russian government is open to having a labor agreement with the Philippines.

“Sa aking hinahangaan na si Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov sapagkat sinabi niya, very positive iyong answer niya and in fact, mamadaliin nila ang isang model employment contract na makakatulong sa lahat ng kababayan natin sa Russia,” Cayetano said.

(I admire Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for his positive response. In fact, they will rush the creation of a model employment contract that will help our fellow Filipinos in Russia.)

Cayetano expressed gratitude to the Russian government for the warm welcome extended to the Philippine delegation.

Before he left, Cayetano conveyed his message to the Filipino community in Russia:”Basta po sa OFWs, for Filipinos abroad anywhere, anytime, we will fight for you,” he concluded — Ronald De Guzman / Marje Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue

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