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Filipino hurt in Tripoli attack to be flown home — DFA exec

/ 08:02 AM April 18, 2019
Filipino hurt in Tripoli attack to be flown home — DFA exec

OFW Rolando Torres (left) takes a last look at his neighborhood in Tripoli, LIbya, as he joins Philippine Embassy officials who fetched him to take him back to the Philippines. Torres was wounded in the forehead during an attack on the Libyan capital. PHOTO GRAB FROM ELMER CATO TWITTER POST

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Embassy in Tripoli has met with the Filipino wounded in rocket attacks on the Libyan capital and will now be sending him home, Chargé d’Affaires Elmer Cato said Thursday.

In a Twitter post, Cato said that the embassy went to the residence of the Filipino who “narrowly survived the barrage of rockets that struck Tripoli last night.”

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READ: Filipino man wounded in Tripoli rocket attack

“Rolando Torres had witnessed previous fighting in Libya but he said last night was different. He now wants to go home,” he said.

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Cato then attached a short clip which showed the damage inflicted by the rocket attacks.

“Rolando has been working in Tripoli since 2006 and had seen the Libyan capital at its most violent but the attack last night that wounded the Nueva Ecija native in the forehead was different,” Cato said in a separate Facebook post.

On Wednesday morning, the Philippine Embassy came to get Rolando Torres—our kababayan who narrowly survived the barrage…

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Posted by Elmer G Cato on Wednesday, April 17, 2019

First batch of OFWs 

Earlier, the embassy said that it already evacuated seven overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from Tripoli who availed of the government’s offer of repatriation.

Cato said the OFWs would be brought to Tunis, the capital of Tunisia, from where they would embark on a flight back to the Philippines.

The remaining 13 Filipino workers “will be repatriated in the next few days.”

READ: DFA to repatriate first batch of OFWs from Libya

However, Foreign Affairs Secretary said OFWs in Libya would not be forced to evacuate.

“We appeal and that is all; no forcible evacuation because it cannot be done physically,” Locsin said in a tweet Wednesday night.

“But OFWs decide. We respect working people,” he added.

Despite this, Cato insisted that Filipinos in Libya should “seriously consider our offer to bring them or their children home.”

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) raised Alert Level III in Tripoli and its adjacent districts last week.

READ: DFA raises alert level 3 in Tripoli, several districts in Libya

Under the Alert Level III or the “voluntary repatriation” phase, Filipinos working in Libya but are currently in the Philippines will not be allowed to travel back to the country “until the situation in the country stabilizes, and the alert level is lowered back to II.” /cbb

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TAGS: DFA, Elmer Cato, Filipino casualty, Libya, News, Rolando Torres, Tripoli
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