OFW group urges PHL gov’t to start evacuation of Filipinos in Gaza

AMID reports of impending invasion of Gaza by Israeli forces, a Filipino migrants’ group in the Middle East calls on the PH government to seriously consider commencing the rescue and evacuation of a hundred of Filipinos living inside Gaza.

“We are urging the Aquino administration through its Foreign Affairs department to start reaching out our fellow Filipinos and their families in Gaza and ensure their evacuation in safe places and to leave Gaza if necessary,” said John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator.

Monterona said citing reports from Migrante members in Israel, Filipinos are bit worried if the fighting and retaliation of Palestinian fighters against the attack of the Israeli forces will intensify spreading to Jerusalem where most of Filipinos are working and leaving there.

As per records from the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), there are about a hundred of Filipinos including their families in Gaza, while a total of 41,000 Filipinos are in Israel cities of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, mostly care givers.

Monterona added that the PH post in Tel Aviv should be vigilant and must be able to read the situation on the ground as it will be crucial when to start the rescue and evacuation of 100 Filipinos in Gaza to get them out of harm’s way.

“The buildup of Israel military reservists near the borders of Israel-Gaza is a clear sign of impending ground invasion by the Israeli forces of Gaza and this will certainly wrought atrocities to the Palestinian people,” Monterona noted.

Monterona said Migrante members and the Filipino community in Israel and Gaza were told to take extra care and avoid unnecessary movements and secure their safety while waiting for the rescue and evacuation efforts by the PH embassy in Tel Aviv.

“We appeal to the international community and the UN Secretary General to intervene to put a halt on Israel attacks against the Palestinian people. Per reports, Palestinian women and children were injured and scores of them died due to heavy assault by the Israeli forces,” Monterona averred.

“We also urge the Aquino administration and all peace loving Filipinos to denounce these latest attacks by the Israeli forces against innocent Palestinians,” Monterona said.

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