Philippines welcomes release of peacekeepers-A A +A
Sunday, March 10, 2013
MANILA -- The Philippine Government welcomed Sunday the safe release of 21 Filipino UN peacekeepers who were abducted in Jamla, Syria last week by the Syrian rebels.
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the government and the Filipino people were thankful to the Jordanian government and military officials on the successful turnover of the peacekeepers to the Jordanian side.
The peacekeepers are members of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF).
"The Philippines stresses the impartiality of UNDOF and its mandate to monitor the Disengagement of Forces Agreement between Israel and Syria and strongly reiterates its call on all parties to respect the freedom of movement and safety and security of peacekeepers in UNDOF," the department said.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said the families of the soldiers were already informed of the good news.
"We in the Armed Forces of the Philippines are very thankful for this outcome. We are grateful to those who have worked to secure the safe release of our peacekeepers," said AFP spokesperson Colonel Arnulfo Burgos Jr.
He said the peacekeepers will undergo post-traumatic stress debriefing and take medical tests to make sure that they are truly well and healthy.
There are more than 600 Filipino UN peacekeepers and military observers deployed in nine mission areas around the world promoting and maintaining peace and stability in conflict areas. (SDR/Sunnex)