MANILA, Philippines- Walong overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) ang nasagip mula sa bayan ng Kibbutz Be’eri, isang lugar na malapit sa Gaza Strip kung saan naglunsad ang Palestinian Islamist group Hamas ng pag-atake laban sa Israel nitong Sabado.
Ayon kay Anthony Mandap, deputy chief of mission and consul general sa Philippine Embassy sa Israel, ang walong OFWs, karamihan ay caregivers, ay nasagip mula sa battle zone ng Israel Defense Forces (IDF) dakong alas-6 ng umaga nitong Linggo (Israel time).
Isa pang Pilipino na naninirahan sa nasabing lugar ang hindi matagpuan, aniya.
“There were talks that he was injured probably during the rescue operation and that he could possibly be taken by Hamas. As of now, he’s still unaccounted for,” pahayag ni Mandap.
“Not our own conclusion,” aniya pa.
Sinabi pa niya na posibleng mayroon pang ibang mga Pilipino na dinukot ng attackers.
“We have unverified information of Filipinos having been taken by Hamas. We’re still looking into that. We have no information about their identities or their exact number,” wika niya.
“This is a developing story. It’s quite possible there were Filipinos taken hostage along with their employers. Typically, Filipinos would not leave their wards behind. So most probably they were also taken along with them,” patuloy niya at sinabing nakikipag-ugnayan na sila sa mga contact sa Gaza Strip, partikular sa Filipino community, upang makakalap ng impormasyon kung paano mapalalaya ng mga awtoridad ang mga biktima.
Inilahad din niya ang unverified reports ng mga Pilipinong nasugatan sa pag-atake, at verified reports ng iba pang hindi makaalis sa Kibbutz Be’eri.
Isa sa walong Pilipinong nasagip, si Monica Biboso, ang dinala sa ospital matapos sunugin ng attackers ang bahay ng kanyang Israeli employer.
“She was rescued together with her employer. They were taken to the hospital as they felt suffocated. But according to her, they already have a clearance to leave the hospital,” pahayag ni Mandap na nakausap si Biboso nitong Linggo.
Aniya, si Biboso ay tila “so stressed and worried, almost on the verge of crying.”
“She said she needed clothes. We wanted to visit them and provide [for] their immediate needs, but we are still constrained by the ongoing military operation,” paliwanag ng consul general.
Ilan pang OFWs ang nagpapasundo sa embahada.
“The problem is we want to help them but there is a strict guideline from the IDF, we can’t venture into the area because these are considered war zones. We cannot yet visit them and attend to their needs. But we are in touch with them by phone,” wika niya.
Ayon sa kanya, kapag pinayagan na sila at ligtas na ang sitwasyon, bibisitahin nila ang OFWs at bibigyan ng tulong.
“As of now, repatriation is still not being planned because of the critical security situation. It’s still unsafe to go out. Of course, we have plans in place in case it would be necessary to transport people from one place to a more secure location,” aniya pa. RNT/SA