Over 164,000 Filipinos repatriated due to pandemic â DFA
In this August 29, 2020, photo, 129 Filipinos are assisted by Philippine Embassy in Bangkok officials at Suvarnabhumi Airport as they checked in for their flight home.

Over 164,000 Filipinos repatriated due to pandemic — DFA

Bella Perez-Rubio (Philstar.com) - September 7, 2020 - 11:14am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs said it has repatriated almost 165,000 Filipinos since the onset of the novel coronavirus pandemic. 

The agency in a press release Sunday said it brought home 42,583 overseas Filipinos in August, bringing the total number of those repatriated to 164,368. 

"An overwhelming majority (76.1%) of the August repatriates flew in from the Middle East while the rest came from Asia and the Pacific, the Americas, Europe, and Africa," DFA's statement read. 

Data from the agency shows that another 10.4% or 32,389 of repatriates came from Asia and the Pacific, 9.6% or 4,109 from the Americas, 3.7% or 1,571 from Europe, and 0.2% or 91 from Africa. 

"The DFA also mounted nine chartered flights in August which brought home distressed Filipinos from Malaysia, Qatar, UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Lebanon," the department said. 

"These DFA-chartered flights were paid for using the Assistance-to-Nationals Fund. The Department, through its Philippine Embassy in Tehran and in coordination with its partner government agencies, also successfully brought home stranded OFWs in Uzbekistan in late August despite the lack of an embassy and consulate general in the country." 

Lauding its "relentless...repatriation efforts despite the imposition of MECQ during the first half of [August]," the DFA further assured the public that it "stands ready to bring home our fellow Filipinos from anywhere in the world." 

"In fact, the second batch of repatriates from Lebanon, following the blast at Beirut Port, arrived safely last Thursday night on board a DFA-chartered Philippine Airlines flight," the agency revealed. 

Over 10,000 cases of COVID-19 among FIlipinos abroad

Meanwhile, a separate report from the DFA on Sunday confirmed only one new case among Filipinos abroad, bringing the total tally to 10,117. 

The agency said the single new case was recorded in the Asia and the Pacific region. 

Coronavirus-related deaths and recoveries remain unchanged at 758 and 6,284, respectively. 

Of the 10,117 cases recorded by the DFA, 1,998 have been verified by the Department of Health. 

In the Philippines, latest data from the DOH places the national caseload at 237, 365 and deaths at 3,875.

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: July 31, 2021 - 3:36pm

Follow this page for updates on a mysterious pneumonia outbreak that has struck dozens of people in China.

July 31, 2021 - 3:36pm

US President Joe Biden says "in all probability" new guidelines or restrictions would be imposed in the United States in response to a resurgence of COVID-19 cases.

Asked if Americans should expect new recommendations from health authorities or new restrictive measures, the president responds, "in all probability," before leaving the White House by helicopter for the weekend. — AFP

July 31, 2021 - 2:01pm

China races Saturday to contain its worst coronavirus outbreak in months as fresh cases were reported in two more parts of the country including the sprawling megacity of Chongqing.

The highly contagious Delta variant has already been confirmed in the capital Beijing and four other provinces, prompting mass testing and putting more than one million people under lockdown.

More than 200 infections nationwide have been linked to a Delta cluster in eastern Jiangsu province, where cleaners at an airport in the city of Nanjing first tested positive on July 20. — AFP

July 30, 2021 - 5:48pm

Hundreds of thousands of people in China are in coronavirus lockdown Friday as the country battles its worst outbreak in months, while the United States intensifies vaccination efforts in the face of a Delta variant-fuelled surge.

The World Health Organization has warned that the highly transmissible strain, first detected in India, could unleash more Covid-19 outbreaks in a high-risk area from Morocco to Pakistan where vaccination rates are low.

In China, a cluster of infections in Nanjing city linked to airport workers who cleaned a plane from Russia earlier this month had reached the capital Beijing and five provinces by Friday. — AFP

July 30, 2021 - 1:18pm

Japan's government will extend a virus state of emergency in Tokyo and impose the measure in four more regions on Friday, as cases surge a week into the pandemic-postponed Olympics.

The Japanese capital reported a record number of new infections on Thursday as daily cases nationwide topped 10,000 for the first time.

On Friday, Tokyo 2020 organizers reported 27 new cases related to the event -- the highest daily figure yet -- although they insist there is nothing to suggest a link to rising infections in Japan. — AFP

July 30, 2021 - 9:51am

Scientific studies with poor methodology and inaccurate findings are exacerbating a COVID-19 misinformation crisis that is discouraging vaccination and putting lives at risk.

The intense public interest in the pandemic and divisive debate in the United States over how to address it facilitates the spread of faulty research papers online, including by vaccine opponents. And even if a study is retracted, it is too late.

"Once the paper is published, the damage is irrevocable," said Emerson Brooking, resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab, which focuses on identifying and exposing disinformation.

Flawed papers "have been fuel to the fire for COVID-19 skeptics and conspiracy theorists. They are frequently the subject of viral online activity. Their findings are further filtered through salacious and misleading articles from fringe websites," Brooking told AFP. — AFP

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