November 29, 2023
MANILA – President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said Wednesday that the government has located and secured the second and last Filipino held by Hamas in Gaza.
Marcos said Noralyn Babadilla is now in Israel.
“I have entrusted our officials at the Philippine Embassy in Tel Aviv to attend to her needs in coordination with Israeli authorities. With this positive development, I am pleased to inform the nation that all Filipinos affected by the war have been accounted for,” the President said in a post on X (formerly Twitter).
Marcos also thanked Israeli authorities for overseeing Babadilla’s release.
“We extend our sincerest gratitude to Israeli authorities for facilitating Noralyn’s release, and for all ongoing assistance to Filipinos in Israel. Our gratitude also goes to Egypt and the State of Qatar for their crucial role in this process over the past several weeks,” he said.
A raging battle between Israeli troops and Hamas militants ensued in Gaza following the October 7 surprise attack of the Palestinian militant group on Israel.
A few days of ceasefire was sought and agreed upon last week to allow the release of civilians trapped and held captive in the war.