PH Embassy in Libya warns Filipinos to flee areas under artillery strike

Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 02 2020 06:07 PM

Libyan transport minister Milad Matouq walks as he inspects damages at Tripoli's Mitiga airport after it was hit by shelling in Tripoli, Libya May 10, 2020. Ismail Zitouny, Reuters

MANILA--The Philippine Embassy in Tripoli told Filipinos in Libya to leave areas under heavy bombardment, including the Tripoli International Airport.

Qasr bin Gashir, a town near the Tripoli district, has been under attack since Monday. Artillery strikes hit a clinic and other places in the past 24 hours.

In an advisory Tuesday, the embassy said no Filipinos were hurt but it urged those in Al Afia and Al Nahr Company to seek shelter elsewhere because artillery strikes were expected.

The embassy also told Filipinos in a hospital in Esbea to flee, too.

“Nananawagan din ang Pasuguan sa ating mga kababayan sa Ali Omar Askar Hospital sa Esbea na pansamantala na rin silang lumikas dahil doon patungo ang kasalukuyang kaguluhan,” the embassy said. 

Filipinos who want to ask the Embassy for help can reach them at phone numbers +218 94 454 1283 and +218 91 824 4208.

Eastern Libyan forces earlier said they had taken back the small town of al-Asaba south of Tripoli, after weeks of territorial losses to forces of the internationally recognized government.

Ahmed Mismari, spokesman for the eastern-based Libyan National Army under Khalifa Haftar, said in a message that the LNA had retaken Asaba, and footage was published online that appeared to show LNA fighters inside the town.

Haftar launched an offensive in April 2019 to capture the capital Tripoli, seat of the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA), but has lost ground recently. -- With a report from Reuters