Senators urge Filipinos in Iraq to heed call for mandatory repatriation
MANILA, Philippines— Senators have appealed to Filipinos in Iraq on Wednesday to heed the government’s call for mandatory repatriation as tensions gripped the Middle East.
“Nakikiusap po tayo sa ating mga kababayan sa Iraq na tumalima sa panawagan ng ating pamahalaan na lumisan pansamantala doon,” Senator Joel Villanueva, chair of the Senate committee on labor, said in a statement.
(We appeal to our countrymen in Iraq to heed the government’s call for temporary evacuation of the area)
The government has placed the entire Iraq under Alert Level 4, and subsequently ordered the mandatory evacuation of Filipinos there.
“Hinihiling natin na tumalima sana ang ating mga kababayan para po sa kapanatagan ng kalooban ng mga pamilya nilang naiwan dito sa ating bansa,” Villanueva said.
(We hope our countrymen will heed the call for the peace of mind of their families they had left behind in the Philippines)
At the same time, he expressed hope that all communication channels of the Philippine Embassy there would be readily available for Filipinos “so that they could immediately get consular assistance should any problems arise as they heed the call of our government to leave Iraq in the meantime.”
“We expect that no Filipino gets left behind in the mandatory evacuation ordered by our government,” the senator added.
Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., meanwhile, called on Filipinos in areas affected by the rising tension between Iran and the United States to stay alert while preparing for the worst.
“While we are praying that tensions will no longer escalate, it is best to be prepared for the worst,” Revilla said in a separate statement, noting that a crisis committee has already been created and that contingencies are in place.
“Nananawagan tayo sa ating mga kababayan sa mga apektadong lugar na maging alerto at aware sa mga ipatutupad ng ating pamahalaan para sa kanilang kaligtasan. Push comes to shove, I ask our Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and Overseas Filipinos (OFs) to cooperate with authorities for their safety.”
Everyone’s safety, he said, is first and foremost.
“As we move forward, I remind everyone that now is a time for unity. Let us all work together to ensure the well-being of our kababayans,” Revilla said.
Edited by MUF
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