Immigration personnel at entry ports on alert for 9/11
MANILA, Philippines—Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. ordered immigration personnel at all ports of entry in the country to go on heightened alert as the world commemorates the 10th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.
David said he directed all immigration officers and immigration intelligence agents assigned to airports and seaports to be on double alert and be on the lookout for suspected foreign terrorists who might attempt to slip into the country.
David issued the order following a US travel advisory where it cited the risk of terror attacks in Mindanao and Metro Manila, particularly in crowded areas such as airports, shopping malls, conference centers and other areas frequented by foreigners.
“You shall exercise double vigilance in conducting a profile of all arriving international travelers,” David said a memorandum order.
He added that foreigners “deemed as potential threats to national security shall be closely monitored and, if possible, subjected to secondary inspection by the immigration officers on duty.”
David also ordered that arriving foreigners whose purpose in visiting the country “was dubious” should be deported immediately.
BI spokesperson Maria Antonette Bucasas-Mangrobang explained that the immigration act authorizes Philippine immigration officers to exercise full discretion in allowing or disallowing a foreigner to enter the country.
Mangrobang stressed that possession of a Philippine entry visa is not a guarantee that a foreigner will be admitted into the country.