MANILA: The Philippines has condemned what is describes as “unjustified” and “inhumane” missile attacks targeting civilian facilities in Saudi Arabia.
The statement from Manila comes as Iran-backed Houthi militants continue to fire cross-border missiles and drones from Yemen toward Saudi cities. Saudi-led military coalition forces have been battling the group for the past six years.
In the most recent incident, security forces intercepted a drone targeting a petroleum tank yard in one of the world’s largest oil shipping ports, Ras Tanura, and a missile heading for a Saudi Aramco residential area in Dhahran, Eastern Province, on Sunday.
“The Philippine government strongly condemns the recent attacks directed against Saudi Arabia,” the Department of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Wednesday.
“The repeated attacks targeting civilian facilities and installations are unjustified and inhumane,” the department said, as it called on all parties to “exercise restraint and settle their differences amicably in order to avoid further loss of lives and property.”
The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh urged Filipinos to “remain observant of their surroundings, and immediately seek cover upon hearing explosions or extremely loud noises.”
While it said that the overall situation in the Eastern Region and the rest of the Kingdom “remains normal,” the embassy asked Philippine nationals to “stay away from any debris or damaged structure caused by missile/drone attacks.”
According to a Philippine Statistics Authority report from last year, over 22 percent of the 2.2 million overseas Filipino workers lives and works in Saudi Arabia.
Although the number has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic, with some Filipinos returning to their homeland, the authority said Saudi Arabia “continued to be the most preferred destination of overseas Filipino workers.”