A TOTAL of 474 Filipinos have been repatriated from conflict-affected Sudan, the Department of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday.
At a televised briefing, Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Paul Raymund P. Cortes said more Filipinos are scheduled to return to the Philippines on May 10 to 12 via commercial flights.
“We are also still fixing the visas of the Sudanese spouses of our overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) through our embassy so they can join their family members who have gone home to the Philippines,” he said.
Mr. Cortes said at least 60 OFWs in Sudan have yet to be evacuated and have expressed their intent to leave, fearing for their safety.
He said at least 730 Filipinos have fled the Sudanese capital of Khartoum.
More than 500 people have died in air raids and artillery attacks since fighting erupted in the African country on April 15, according to Al Jazeera News. Thousands have been wounded and hospitals destroyed, with many residents — some on foot — trying to flee the war.
The war in Sudan is between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces paramilitary group, which started on April 8 in the capital city of Khartoum and neighboring Obdurman.
The United Nations has said more than 50,000 acutely malnourished children have had treatment disrupted due to the conflict and hospitals that were still functioning faced shortages in medical supplies, power and water. — John Victor D. Ordoñez