By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora
MANILA (Philippines News Agency) – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Friday said no Filipino has been reported affected by the raging wildfires in the United States and Canada.
Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Eduardo Meñez said the agency did not yet receive any reports from its foreign service posts in the US, which is suffering what is described to be the “worst wildfire season” in a decade.
The same applies among the Filipino community in Canada, which has been at national preparedness level 4 over more than a hundred uncontrolled “active” fires.
Meñez, however, clarified that DFA’s latest monitoring may have not included permanent migrants as they do not report their situations to Philippine Embassies and Consulates.
“All our posts provide advisories to the Filipino communities under their jurisdictions when there are events that may affect safety and security, and submit reports when they become aware of affected individuals,” he told reporters. “In many instances, if the Filipino community is composed of permanent migrants or dual citizens in Western countries, they do not report their situations to our foreign service posts.”
Meanwhile, he said four former Filipinos were affected by the floodings in Germany and Belgium but were eventually evacuated to safer areas.
Severe flooding after days of heavy rains in western Germany and Belgium has claimed at least 100 lives and left over a thousand people missing.
At least 93 fatalities in Germany and 12 deaths in Belgium have so far been reported by the local media. (PNA)