Philippines repatriates 111 Filipino seafarers stranded in China

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The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has repatriated 111 stranded Filipino seafarers and the remains of two seamen from Fujian, China aboard the carrier vessel Star Mariner, which docked at the Manila Port on Thursday.

According to the DFA, the stranded Filipinos came from nine different Chinese fishing vessels that were forced to anchor in the high seas for the past several months, unable to dock because of the coronavirus restrictions.

The Star Mariner left Fujian, China on July 11 with 101 stranded Filipinos to fetch 10 more stranded seafarers and two remains on board another stranded ship in the Indian Ocean before proceeding to Manila.

Upon the ship’s arrival in Manila, the repatriates underwent RT-PCR testing and will be temporarily housed at Bureau of Quarantine-approved facilities for mandatory quarantine while they await the results.

The DFA has vowed to continuously monitor the condition of and extend assistance to the remaining Filipino seafarers in Fujian, China, and will continue its efforts to negotiate with local authorities in China for their immediate repatriation to the Philippines.

The DFA earlier said it is planning to repatriate over 50,000 overseas Filipinos by the end of July and cut the number of stranded Filipinos abroad to 117,049. (Source: INQUIRER.net)

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