By Roy Mabasa
A Filipino national working for an oil and gas service provider outside Tripoli was reportedly wounded when a mortar round fell and exploded in their compound near the Tripoli International Airport.
According to the Philippine Embassy in Libya, the Filipino national only sustained a shrapnel wound in his right foot, while a Sudanese co-worker was killed in the explosion.
The report quoted Bari Macalawi, a member of the augmentation team from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), as the one who received the information about the wounded Filipino national.
Macalawi, however, did not mention the name of the wounded OFW (overseas Filipino worker) in his report.
“What happened to our kababayan in Qasr bin Ghashir earlier in the morning underscores the danger that all of us face here in Tripoli as a result of the ongoing fighting just outside its gates. It comes a week after another kababayan narrowly escaped death after rockets fell on a neighborhood where more than 200 other Filipinos live and work,” a Philippine Embassy official said in a social media post.
Last week, another OFW was slightly hurt by glass splinters when a rocket exploded in a residential area in Tripoli.
Since clashes between warring factions began to escalate over the last three weeks, the Philippine government has repeatedly appealed to the 1,000 remaining Filipino overseas workers in Libya to seriously consider the offer to bring them home while it is still possible to do so.
Reports from Tripoli showed that at least 264 people have been killed and 1,266 wounded since Khalifa Hiftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) launched its offensive in the capital early this month.
“Some of us may not be lucky the next time rockets or mortars rain on Tripoli. And so before the fighting intensifies further and before it gets closer to where many of our kababayan are in Tripoli, we plead to them and to their families in the Philippines to please seriously consider our offer to bring them home while we still can,” a Philippine Embassy official said.