• Filipina-Egyptian hit by stray bullet in Cairo suburb


    A teenage Filipina-Egyptian was hit by a stray bullet in Egypt, as the Philippine government stopped the deployment of Filipino workers in the strife-torn Middle East country.

    Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said in a text message that the girl, who he did not name.

    Leves in the Helwan district in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.

    She was hit in her right shoulder by a stray bullet that penetrated their family’s apartment.

    Embassy personnel visited the girl in the hospital where she was in stable condition. They also offered her assistance, Hernandez said.

    The DFA reiterated its advisory to some 6,000 Filipinos in Egypt to avoid places of protests and to go the Philippine embassy if they want to be repatriated.

    The department on Thursday raised the crisis alert level for Egypt to 3 amid the bloody dispersal of protesters, most of them belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood.

    The group is made up of supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, the first democratically elected leader of the country.

    Morsi, who is currently detained at an undisclosed location, was ousted amid allegations of premeditated murder on soldiers and officers during a prison breakout in 2011. The Brotherhood wants him reinstated to power.

    “Our embassy is prepared to assist Filipinos who wish to go home in view of the security concerns in that country,” Hernandez said.

    Alert level 3 means voluntary repatriation and the suspension of the deployment of new workers, as well as the return to Egypt of vacationing workers, spouses of Egyptian nationals and Islamic university students and their dependents.

    “We continue to advise our kababayans to exercise extra precaution and stay in their homes; if they need to go out, they should avoid places where protest actions are taking place, and to comply with the Egyptian government’s orders, especially the curfew,” Hernandez said.

    Cairo’s interim government imposed a curfew in several Egyptian provinces.

    The violent crackdown of the Muslim Brotherhood’s camps has been condemned by several countries, including the United States.

    Hernandez advised Filipinos to stay away from the windows of their houses or apartments if they are living near the protest areas.

    With the raising of the crisis alert level for Egypt, the Governing Board of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration implemented a total ban on processing and deployment of overseas Filipino workers bound for that country.

    With a report from  Catherine S. Valente


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