34 Filipino trafficking victims returning home from Syria
MANILA, Philippines — Thirty-four Filipino trafficking victims housed in the Philippine Embassy in Syria are expected to be flown back home, according to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr.
“What I was told is that there are 34 and we’re cleaning out the shelters,” Locsin said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel on Monday.
Over the weekend, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced the repatriation of six Filipina human trafficking victims from Syria.
They were all victims of human trafficking, illegally hired in Syria after traveling to Dubai as tourists, the DFA said.
The DFA earlier launched an investigation into the allegations of “poor treatment” of the Filipino victims while in the embassy’s shelter.
Following the allegations, Locsin overhauled the staff of the Philippine Embassy in Damascus.
A female human rights lawyer was assigned to head the country’s foreign post in Syria.
“I have recalled five staff from Damascus. The CDA [Chargé d’affaires] there is fantastic and I have given her four [staff members] who will back her up in her approach of running things with [overseas Filipino workers] that are being abused,” Locsin said.
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