By Roy Mabasa
The Philippine Embassy in Japan has finally established communications with a 26-member tour group from the Philippines that was initially reported trapped at a hotel in Sapporo following Thursday morning’s magnitude 6.7 earthquake that hit Hokkaido Prefecture.
Ambassador to Japan Jose Laurel confirmed that the members of the group are all safe and accounted for.
In a report to the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila, Laurel said the Embassy is making arrangements to ensure the 26-man group would have food, water, and accommodations until it is safe for them to leave Sapporo.
“The Embassy continues to monitor the condition of the 1,800 members of the Filipino Community in Sapporo and other areas in Hokkaido that were affected by the earthquake even as authorities confirmed there were no Filipinos among the injured,” the Embassy statement said.
Electricity has been restored in Sapporo and convenience stores and key establishments have already reopened as of press time.
The envoy urged affected Filipinos to contact the Embassy, if needed, at +8180 4928 7979.