In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, 128 Filipinos seafarers are now back home following a successful repatriation operation from the Filipino government and the Turkish authorities in Ankara.
In fact, the repatriation process was established by the Philippine Embassy in Ankara and the Philippine Consulate General in Istanbul led by Ambassador Raul S. Hernandez in coordination with the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila and Turkish authorities.
What is more, crewmembers’ repatriation was arranged by Turkish Airlines on 10 June 2020, as seafarers arrived at the NAIA in Manila the next day, 11 June 2020.
For the records, the repatriated nationals were composed of:
69 land-based Filipino nationals, with 19 students and 34 undocumented workers from provinces across Turkey from Ankara, Antalya, Bodrum, Denizli, Eskisehir, Erzincan, Gaziantep, Izmir, Istanbul, Konya, Mersin, Nevsehir, and Trabzon.
56 sea-based workers who disembarked from different sea vessels docked in Turkish ports and three Filipino seafarers who signed off from their vessels for emergency non-COVID 19 related medical treatments.
Concluding, Ambassador Hernandez highlighted the unwavering commitment of the Philippine Government under the leadership of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to ensure the safety and welfare of all Filipinos, both at home and those abroad. This commitment includes the prompt assistance to distressed nationals overseas.