DFA warns Filipino workers to stay away from Lebanon
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Saturday called on prospective overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to respect the total deployment ban to Lebanon and other countries.
The DFA also reminded Filipinos intending to work abroad to steer clear of illegal recruiters.
The DFA made the call following the repatriation of 29 OFWs from Beirut. They arrived in Manila on Friday afternoon via an Etihad Airways flight from the Middle East.
The troubled OFWs were not identified by the DFA but it said that all of them worked in Lebanon in defiance of the total deployment ban of OFWs to that country.
“Majority of them escaped from their employers for reasons ranging from unpaid salaries to emotional or physical abuse,” the DFA added.
The government shouldered the OFWs’ airline tickets, using its Assistance to Nationals Fund.
Prior to their repatriation, the OFWs temporarily stayed at the Filipino Workers Resource Center, a facility attached to the Philippine Embassy in Beirut.
In 2006, the government ordered a ban on the deployment of OFWs to Lebanon due to the security situation and inadequate legal protection for its laborers there.
Despite the travel ban on workers, many Filipinos still managed to work illegally in Lebanon, circumventing the restrictions by traveling first through third countries before proceeding to their final destination.
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