Kuwait grants PH request for amnesty extension

MANILA Kuwait announced it is extending its amnesty for overstaying Filipino workers a few days after the Philippines made the request, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Tuesday.

In his report to Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, Ambassador to Kuwait Renato Villa said the amnesty program was extended by two months until April 22, from its original deadline set on Thursday.

According to the envoy, the order for the extension of the three-week amnesty was signed on Tuesday by Kuwait Interior Minister Sheikh Khalid Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah.

The decision came less than a week after Cayetano formally conveyed the extension request to Kuwaiti Ambassador Mousaed Al-Thwaikh in Manila.

Cayetano said the extension is being requested to allow the Embassy to accommodate more of the 10,800 Filipinos believed to have overstayed their visas or ran away from their employers as only close to 3,000 of those qualified have applied so far.

For his part, the official stressed the DFA remains in close coordination with Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and the Department of Labor and Employment to ensure a successful outcome of negotiations with the Kuwaiti Government to improve protection mechanisms for the more than 250,000 Filipinos working there.

Source: Philippine News Agency

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