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DFA deploys team in Iraq to speed up repatriation of Filipinos

By: - NewsLab Lead / @MSantosINQ
/ 04:56 PM June 17, 2014

Shiite tribal fighters raise their weapons and chant slogans against the al-Qaida-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in the northwest Baghdad’s Shula neighborhood, Iraq, Monday, June 16, 2014. AP

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Tuesday that it has deployed a rapid response team (RRT) to Iraq to help in the Philippine government’s repatriation effort in the country struggling from a growing insurgency.

“Aside from the personnel of our Embassy, we have deployed a rapid response team (Monday), led by Undersecretary Jesus Yabes, but some members of the RRT have already gone to Iraq,” DFA Spokesman Charles Jose said in a press conference Tuesday.

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The DFA previously raised crisis alert level 3 in Iraq, citing serious concerns on the peace and security situation there.

Jose previously said that the majority of the 900 Filipinos in Iraq were in the Kurdistan region north of the country where only crisis alert level 1 was raised.

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Reports from international news agencies say that the insurgents have already captured areas surrounding the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.

United States President Barack Obama has also reportedly ordered the deployment of 275 soldiers to Iraq to protect the US embassy.

Jose said no overseas Filipino worker in Iraq has signed up for voluntary repatriation.

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TAGS: Crisis, Crisis Alert Level 3, DFA, Iraq, rapid response team, repatriation
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