MANILA - More than 300 Filipinos from Lebanon returned to the Philippines on Saturday due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of the President (OP) said.
The 317 repatriates arrived in Manila through a special chartered flight as part of the Philippine government's twin repatriation and goodwill missions to Lebanon.
The 2-day mission included the delivery of food supplies for the Filipino community in Lebanon, the turnover of medical supplies to Lebanese groups and hospitals, and a meeting with the Filipino community leaders in the Middle Eastern country.
President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the mission following his address during the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 22, his office said.
He said Filipino migrant workers were among those devastated by the pandemic, but "they go on in the frontlines, healing, caring for others in the different parts of the world."
To date, some 2,596 Filipinos in Lebanon have been repatriated by the government since December 2019. Over 193,000 Filipinos have returned to the Philippines since February 2020 due to the global health crisis.