MANILA, Philippines: Fortunately, no Filipinos were harmed during the powerful 7.5 magnitude earthquake that struck the Ishikawa Prefecture in Japan on New Year’s Day. Despite the tremors, some Filipinos sought shelter in evacuation centers, ensuring their safety during the incident. Philippine Ambassador to Tokyo, Mylene Garcia-Albano, provided an update on the situation of Filipinos in Ishikawa during a recent television interview.
Ambassador Garcia-Albano reassured the public, saying, “We have not received any reports of Filipinos in Ishikawa being harmed due to the earthquake that occurred yesterday afternoon.” She emphasized that the safety of Filipinos is a top priority for the embassy.
The Ishikawa Prefecture, located in the western part of Japan and near the sea, prompted officials to issue a tsunami warning. In response, approximately 35 Filipinos were transferred to the city hall as a precautionary measure following the evacuation alert issued the previous night.
While some Filipinos chose to seek refuge in temporary shelters, others decided to stay in their homes due to damaged roads and bridges, making it difficult to reach evacuation centers. The embassy received reports of Filipinos opting to stay home, ensuring their safety within familiar surroundings.
Although the earthquake was felt in Tokyo, the capital city is quite a distance away from Ishikawa as it is located in central Japan. The Philippine Consulate General (PCG) in Osaka and Nagoya also confirmed that no Filipinos were harmed during the strong earthquake.
Ambassador Garcia-Albano highlighted the proactive approach taken by the embassy and the PCGs in preparing for such events. Throughout the year, they maintain constant communication with Filipino community leaders in different parts of Japan to stay informed about their situation and provide necessary assistance. The embassy’s Assistance to Nationals Unit and Migrant Workers Office actively monitor the condition of Filipinos, ensuring their well-being during challenging times.
When asked about advice for Filipinos in Japan, Ambassador Garcia-Albano emphasized their commitment to helping the community, stating, “We are here to help. Please visit our website if you need any assistance.” She further encouraged Filipinos to utilize the embassy’s hotline and assured them of a prompt response. Additionally, they are closely monitoring updates from the Japanese government to provide accurate and timely information to the Filipino community.
In times of crisis, the Philippine embassy and consulates in Japan stand ready to support and assist Filipinos. Their dedication to ensuring the safety and well-being of their citizens is evident through their proactive measures and continuous communication with the Filipino community. With their support and resources, Filipinos in Japan can find solace in knowing that help is readily available when needed.
Source: The Manila Times