ABS CBN in Manila, Philippines reports that the government of Bahrain has vowed to protect all its foreign workers, including Filipinos, following increased political conflict in the Middle Eastern nation.
Millions of Filipinos are employed throughout the Middle East and Gulf region, so the Philippine government are particularly concerned about the welfare of their OFW’s (Overseas Filipino Workers).
Ambassador Corazon Yap-Bahjin reported that Bahraini Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa gave his assurance to her and to four other ambassadors with significant worker populations.
On Thursday, Bahjin said she, together with the ambassadors of India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Thailand, met with the Prime Minister, who assured that his government respects the rights of all foreigners and will protect them from anyone who will inflict harm.
The Prime Minister also added that Bahrain appreciates the foreign workers’ contribution to their economies.
Meanwhile, Ambassador Bahjin affirmed that there are no Filipino injuries or fatalities due to the political conflict in Bahrain.
“As of this time, the Embassy team has not received any reports of Filipinos injured or dead due to the crackdown of protesters in the Pearl Roundabout,” she said.
The Embassy is operating 24/7 to address the concerns of Filipinos in Bahrain. It is in constant contact with Filipino community members, and the Embassy officers and staff have disseminated their mobile numbers to them for immediate information and coordination.
The Bahraini government has imposed a 4 p.m. to 4 a.m. curfew in areas where protests have been held. This was then shortened to 8 p.m. to 4 a.m.
The Embassy earlier urged Filipinos to restrict its movements to the necessary, stock up on basic necessities, have important documents ready and avoid joining or being in areas of protest.
It has also asked Filipinos to remain calm, actively monitor ongoing developments, keep their communications lines open with the Embassy and their designated community coordinators, and inform the Embassy or Filipino community coordinators assigned to their area of their whereabouts.
The Embassy’s hotline numbers are: (973) 17721234, (973) 17740951 and (973) 17721908.
Source: ABS CBN.