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Pinoy Abroad

DFA to start repatriation of Pinoys from Sudan next week

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Friday that they expected to start repatriating Filipinos out of a conflict-hit Sudan next week.

DFA Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs Eduardo de Vega, in a Balitanghali interview, said the repatriation of Filipinos would take time because airport transfers were not possible amid the conflict between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.

“For the repatriation, we already have authorization [to do that] given proper conditions. It should be land evacuation, not by plane, because the airport is not operational. We hope it can be done next week,” de Vega said.

“We wil update you as soon as our team is able to enter Sudan. There is power supply and internet connection, and initially, Filipinos there on record are just around 250. Now, it is almost 500 since others were not registered, so we are asking them to reach out to us,” de Vega added.

As this developed, de Vega called on Filipinos in Sudan to reach out to Philippine Embassy officials via the contact number +20 122 743 6472 and via the PHinEgypt Facebook messenger account so the embassy can send them proper assistance, particularly food.

“A lot of Filipinos employed by a big company there like DAL are being assisted by the company for their supplies, but it is not the case for others employed in other firms. The advantage for these Filipinos [not employed by a big firm] is that they are located in the same location in significant numbers, like 11 of them reside in the same building. It is easier to locate them,” de Vega said.

“The hotline is available, and the embassy will reach out to you,” he added.

De Vega said the nearest Philippine Embassy to Sudan was in Egypt. Howeverr, the Philippines had an honorary consulate in Sudan which stands ready to provide supplies such as groceries to Filipinos in need.

The DFA earlier confirmed that a Filipino was hurt in the ongoing clashes in Sudan, though the Filipino was said to be in good condition.

With some 350 people killed so far in the Sudan conflict, the United Nations has called on both parties to observe a three-day ceasefire to give way to the end of Ramadan or the end of fasting for Muslims and to give civilians time to evacuate the conflict-affected areas.

The violence in Sudan erupted on Saturday between forces of the two generals who seized power in a 2021 coup: army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo who commands the RSF. — DVM, GMA Integrated News