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Syria Bans Deployment of OFWs
The Philippines is no longer on the list of countries allowed to deploy workers to strife-torn Syria.
“The Philippine Embassy in Damascus reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) that the Syrian Ministry of Interior issued Decision Order No. 500 dated 04 March 2012 excluding Filipinos from the list of foreign nationals allowed to work in Syria,” the DFA statement said.
Starting April 1, only workers from Sri Lanka, Nepal, Indonesia, Vietnam and Bangladesh, will be allowed to enter Syria.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) welcomed the news, adding that it will help government implement the deployment ban to Syria and curb human trafficking.
“Itong ban na ito on the Syrian side confirms na hindi na sila magi-issue ng entry visas for Syria which, therefore, sustains our own total deployment ban here in the Philippines,” said POEA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac.
Ambassador Ricardo Endaya, who is assisting in the repatriation and extraction efforts of Filipinos in Syria as part of the Rapid Response Team, said the ban is a result of the DFA meetings with its Syrian counterpart.
“Ito ay isa sa resulta ng pakikipagusap ng ating secretary of foreign affairs sa pamahalaan ng Syria na pauwiin na ang mga Pilipino dahil sa lumalalang kalagayan ng seguridad dito po sa bansang ito,” Endaya said in an interview with dzMM on Tuesday morning.
The DFA said a deployment ban implemented by the Philippines is currently in place because of the worsening security situation in that country.
The DFA raised crisis alert level 4 in Syria last December 22, and the mandatory repatriation of all Filipinos in the country is underway.
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