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Filipino peacekeepers trapped in Haiti

2010-01-13 16:39 BJT

Special Report: Strong Quake Hits Haiti |

MANILA, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- Filipino peacekeepers were reportedly among those trapped inside a hotel in Port-au-Prince, capital of Haiti that was hit by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake on Tuesday.

Armed Forces of Philippines spokesperson Lt. Col. Romeo Brawner said he received reports that some Filipino peacekeepers were trapped in a hotel in capital Port-au-Prince, but a Philippine diplomat to the UN said he has not received confirmation on this.

The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is deeply concerned over the condition of more than 500 Filipino civilians and peacekeepers in the Caribbean state of Haiti, an official with the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs said Wednesday.

According to the DFA, the Philippine Mission to the United Nations in New York has had difficulty in establishing contact with the 10th Philippine Peacekeeping Contingent serving with the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) as communication lines have bogged down.

There are 157 officers and enlisted personnel from the Armed Forces of the Philippines and 22 officers from the Phillipine National Police (PNP), as well as an estimated 447 members of the Filipino community in the said country.

"The UN headquarters in New York has not been able to communicate with the MINUSTAH in Port-au-Prince. Communications to and from Haiti have been damaged during the quake. The DFA will provide the public with updates as soon as reports are received from New York or the Philippine Embassy in Havana, Cuba, which covers Haiti," the DFA said.

The Philippines has a total of 1,056 Filipino peacekeepers serving in nine countries.

Editor: Du Xiaodan | Source: Xinhua