Malacañang on Saturday expressed gratitude to Qatar Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani for issuing a royal pardon to 15 Filipinos, in light of the Holy Month of Ramadan.
Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the clemency was a manifestation of a continuing good relationship between the Philippines and Qatar.
The granting of clemency for the 15 Filipinos was announced by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on June 7.
“The Emir of Qatar has proven once again the essence of Islam by granting the clemency. Indeed, it is good news for the entire Filipino community living not only in Qatar but in all Middles East countries,” the DFA said.
The DFA added that preparations are underway for the immediate repatriation of pardoned Filipinos.
In Qatar, the practice of granting clemency covers only those jailed offenders who have served a substantial portion of their sentence.
The Emir usually issues pardons twice a year, during Ramadan and the Qatari National Day in December.
The granting of pardons during Ramadan is practiced across the Gulf and is usually made around the time or during Eid’l Fitr, which celebrates the end of the Holy Month of Ramadan.
In 2011, at least 25 Filipinos held in Qatari detention facilities for various offenses were granted clemency by the Emir.