MANILAThe Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has repatriated 15 Filipino fishing boat captains imprisoned by Indonesian authorities for alleged illegal fishing in their waters.
The DFA said five other Filipinos held for overstaying were also repatriated by the Philippine Consulate General in Manado on Monday.
The boat captains were released to officials of the Consulate General after serving jail terms of from five months to three years following their arrest for illegal fishing.
Before leaving for the Philippines, the boat captains expressed their appreciation for the welfare assistance extended to them while they were still in prison, Consul General Oscar Orcine said.
Meanwhile, the Filipino seamen were also given welfare assistance of PHP5,000 each before they boarded their flights for the Philippines.
Orcine said the Consulate General also assisted the other five repatriates from two families in returning to the Philippines.
He said the Consulate General successfully lobbied with Indonesian authorities in getting the five released simultaneously. (PR)
Source: Philippine News Agency