Pasay City — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) welcomed on Monday morning, January 27 the arrival of 128 distressed Filipinos from UAE, 115 of them were from Abu Dhabi while 13 were from Dubai.
The DFA provided legal advice to the said distressed Filipinos needing legal assistance in the UAE.
The DFA also shouldered the maintenance and operating costs of the shelters in the UAE where most of them were previously accommodated, issued travel documents free of charge, paid for their exit visas and related costs, as well as their airfares up to their respective home provinces.
Before the Filipinos left for Manila, the Philippine Embassy in Abu Dhabi urged the repatriates to spread the word on the dangers and hardships to prevent other Filipinos from the suffering.
The Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) and its member agencies, such the Bureau of Immigration, OWWA, and DSWD, were also present at the airport to welcome the repatriates. TESDA representatives were also present to provide information on free skills training programs.
“The Philippine government will never tire and continues to assist our kababayans who are distressed,” said DFA Undersecretary Sarah Lou Y. Arriola. “While we welcome the safe return of our distressed kababayans, we also make an appeal to everyone to be mindful of the dangers of human trafficking and to stay away from illegal recruiters.”
The Philippine Embassy in Abu Dhabi has repatriated 265 distressed Filipinos since the start of the year, while the Philippine Consulate General in Dubai has repatriated 150 Filipinos.(DFA)