BI prepares for possible influx of OFWs from Middle East amid tensions in region

(Eagle News) — The Bureau of Immigration on Thursday, Jan. 9, said it was advised to expect a “mass repatriation” of Filipinos from the Middle East amid the rising tensions in the region following a United States airstrike that killed Iran’s top military official Qasem Soleimani.

In a statement, Immigration chief Jaime Morente said as a result, he has ordered the port operations division to ensure the presence of adequate manpower.

He said the BI is ready to deploy additional personnel, if needed.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III has said only Filipinos in Iraq were covered by a mandatory evacuation.

He said this was after the alert level 4, which had been hoisted over Lebanon following Soleimani’s killing, was brought down to alert level 2.

He said the alert level 4 hoisted over Iran was also removed.