5 Filipinos evacuated by Indonesia from Kabul arrive in Manila; 5 more now in Almaty

Published August 23, 2021, 4:42 PM

by Roy Mabasa

The Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed that a total of seven Filipinos departed Kabul for Almaty, Kazakhstan – five of them left Sunday while the other two left the Afghan capital last week but the department has only recently confirmed their whereabouts.

Afghans gather on a roadside near the military part of the airport in Kabul on August 20, 2021, hoping to flee from the country after the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan. Wakil KOHSAR / AFP

As of today, the DFA said there are only 27 Filipinos remaining in Afghanistan, 10 of whom have opted to remain in that country despite the clarion call to leave due to the uncertainty of the situation following the takeover by the Taliban.

The remaining 17, according to the DFA, are awaiting repatriation efforts from their respective companies and employers.

When asked why the 10 Filipinos signified their intent not to leave Afghanistan, DFA Assistant Secretary Eduardo Meñez said the reason could be “work-related”.

On the other hand, some Filipinos who have fled Afghanistan are not returning to the Philippines for “various reasons”.

Since the Afghan crisis began last week, around 182 Filipinos have already left Kabul and were evacuated to different countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Indonesia.

Meanwhile, the 5 Filipinos from Jakarta have arrived in Manila and are currently undergoing quarantine.

All repatriates that have managed to exit Afghanistan have been assisted by various Philippine posts and missions abroad.

“The DFA has been working with various governments so that repatriates in transit need not fully quarantine in the transit country, as they will be undergoing quarantine upon arrival in the Philippines,” the Department said.