DFA tells Filipinos in Iraq to stay indoors amid unrest
Iraqi protesters burn tyres during a demonstration against state corruption, failing public services, and unemployment, in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on October 5, 2019. Renewed protests took place under live fire in Iraq's capital and the country's south Saturday as the government struggled to agree a response to days of rallies that have left nearly 100 dead. The largely spontaneous gatherings of demonstrators -- whose demands have evolved since they began on Tuesday from employment and better services to fundamental government change -- have swelled despite an internet blackout and overtures by the country's elite. Hours after a curfew in Baghdad was lifted on Saturday morning, dozens of protesters rallied around the oil ministry in the capital, facing live rounds fired in their direction, an AFP photographer said.
Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP
DFA tells Filipinos in Iraq to stay indoors amid unrest
Franco Luna (Philstar.com) - October 6, 2019 - 11:36am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs on its website released an advisory warning Filipinos in Iraq to take extra precautionary measures in the wake of unrest in the region. 

"Filipinos, especially those in Baghdad, are advised to remain indoors and to avoid any movement especially in areas where demonstrations are taking place," DFA Media and Public Affairs acting director Johann Andal said in an advisory on the department's website.

"[They] are also advised to make sure they have enough food and water and to call the Philippine Embassy in Baghdad if they require assistance," he added.

Some 10,000 Filipinos were estimated to be living in Iraq in 2012, while another 10,000 was expected to begin working in the country in 2014. 

The DFA in 2018 reported an influx of Filipino workers illegally trafficked into Iraq from Dubai. Some of the workers were reportedly recruited on social media and were sexually harassed on the way to Baghdad. 

Iraq is entering its fifth day of civil unrest as protesters continue to clash with security forces throughout a string of street demonstrations. Dozens of lives were lost in the succeeding protests in the wake of wartorn cities and crumbling infrastructure. The country's 40 million population continues to live in worsening conditions, as anti-corruption sentiment rises among the youth. 

"Families in the Philippines are requested to relay the advisory to their next of kin working in Iraq in view of the interruption in communication services," the advisory said. 

BAGHDAD DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS OFWS
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