Filipinos safe in Gaza, ready to evacuate - PH envoy

Posted at 11/17/12 3:15 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos in Gaza in Israel remain safe amid the ongoing conflict in the area, a Philippine envoy said, noting plans to evacuate are still on the table.

"The Filipinos, as of yesterday, are safe. No one has been hurt," Generoso Calonge, Ambassador to Israel, told ANC's “Dateline Philippines” on Saturday.

Calonge said his office in Tel Aviv is still assessing if evacuation plans should be pursued as Egypt is helping calm the situation between Israel and Gaza.

"I understand the [Foreign Affairs] department is exploring the possibility of having an evacuation plan via the border in Egypt ... but as of today, there is an effort to have a truce between the two sides to be brokered by Egypt," Calonge said.

"We are awaiting progress in that attempt of Egypt," he continued.

There are about 120 Filipinos living in Gaza, Calonge said, noting most them are spouses of residents in the Israeli city.