By Libya Herald Staff.
Tripoli, 29 May 2014:
In view of the deteriorating security . . .[restrict]situation, the Philippine Embassy raised its crisis alert level from Level 2 (Restriction Phase) to Level 3 (Voluntary Repatriation Phase), effective Thursday, 29 May.
Under Level 3, Filipinos in Libya – of which there are an estimated 13,122—are encouraged to leave the country voluntarily as soon as possible. The Philippine government has promised to bear the repatriation cost.
The decision came this week after Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario visited Tripoli and met with Philippine Embassy officials and the embassy’s Rapid Response Team to carry out the government’s contingency plan.
When asked if there was anything specific that had prompted this decision, Filipino community leader John Puno said, “Well, many embassies are closing here and it’s becoming more and more difficult for Filipinos to wire money back to the Philippines. We have daily quotas, and we’ve reached them already.”
To date, diplomats have left several of the Arab State embassies, including Saudi Arabia, Algeria, the UAE, and Egypt. The US government asked Americans to leave Libya on 27 May, while British Ambassador Michael Aron assured British citizens via Twitter that UK travel advice had not changed. No official statements have been made regarding possible closures by other European or Asian embassies. [/restrict]