Amid the persisting global travel restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Philippine Embassy in Bahrain facilitated the repatriation of six overseas Filipinos previously working in Bahrain by funding their tickets and securing the necessary exit permits.
Five seafarers transiting in Bahrain from the United Kingdom was also assisted by securing their transit permits with the Bahraini government.
The passengers joined Gulf Air flight 153 which left from Bahrain to Manila. The Philippines has welcomed over 35,000 overseas Filipinos since the coronavirus outbreak, the Department of Foreign Affairs stated. At least 13,566 land-based OFs have been repatriated while 21,829 are cruise ship crews, the agency reported.
Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola said that more repatriates from Bahrain, Japan, France, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Washington, and South Korea are expected to return to the country within the next few days.
“It was announced that starting next week, the quota (for OFs arrivals) will increase to 1,200 each day, so there will be more repatriates,” she said.
The DFA also reported eight new COVID-19 cases among overseas Filipinos, bringing the total number of infected individuals to 5,369. It also recorded four fatalities from the Middle East, raising the death toll to 361.
Meanwhile, President Rodrigo Duterte last week thanked the Kingdom of Bahrain for granting royal pardon and releasing 16 Filipinos. Of the 16 Filipinos, two were pardoned on Eid Al Fitr.