Philippine Navy deploys two ships for Middle East repatriation

The Philippine Navy landing platform dock BRP Davao del Sur preparing to depart for the Middle East to repatriate displaced Filipinos on January 14, 2020 (Photo: Philippine Navy)

The Philippine Navy has ordered two of its ships to sail for the Middle East to help in the repatriation of Filipino citizens amid tensions between the United States and Iran.

The Tarlac-class landing platform dock (LPD) BRP Davao del Sur (pictured) and the Gregorio del Pilar-class patrol vessel BRP Ramon Alcaraz departed Manila’s South Harbor with over 400 embarked sailors and marines on Tuesday, January 14. The two ships comprising Naval Task Force (NTF) 82.1 are expected to reach Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, after a 25-day journey that will include a brief refueling and resupply stop in Sri Lanka.

Davao del Sur and Ramon Alcaraz will serve as sea-based platforms that could provide accommodation for Filipinos displaced by the ongoing tensions in the Middle East.

Earlier this month, the Philippine government had ordered a newbuild coast guard vessel that had been en route to Manila on its delivery voyage to divert to the region to assist in repatriation efforts.

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