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POEA bans OFW deployment to Iraq except Kurdistan

February 4, 2012 8:03am
Amid the recent rise in violence in Iraq, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) imposed a total ban on the deployment of overseas Filipino workers there.

But the POEA Governing Board, in Resolution No. 3, imposes "total ban on OFWs to Iraq but allows deployment to Kurdistan subject to POEA rules and regulations,” said Labor Secretary and POEA Governing Board chairperson Rosalinda Baldoz.

"The ban will stay until such time that it has been determined that the security condition has normalized, after due consultation with the Department of Foerign Affairs (DFA)," she added.

POEA Administrator and governing board vice chairman Hans Leo Cacdac, and Governing Board members Leonardo de Ocampo and Guillermina Gabor also signed the resolution.

The board issued the resolution after the Office of the President has approved the recommendation of the DFA raising the Alert Level in Iraq from Alert Level 2 to 3.

"The recommendation was in view of the expected surge of terrorism and sectarian violence in Iraq following the withdrawal of US military forces last December 2011," Baldoz said.
A total deployment ban is recommended for countries placed under Alert Level 3.
Since 2007, the POEA suspended the processing and deployment of all OFWs bound for Iraq and Afghanistan due to the peace and order situation there.

On September 2 last year, the POEA issued Governing Board Resolution No. 5 that allowed those with existing contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan and who are working inside American military camps and facilities to finish their contracts.

Also, the resolution allowed covered workers to be redeployed to finish their contracts should they go home to the Philippines before their contracts' expiration.

Cacdac issued an advisory to all concerned imposing a total ban and the suspension of the processing and deployment of all OFWs bound for Iraq except for the Kurdistan region. — LBG, GMA News
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