The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said on Sunday that there were no reports of Filipinos among the dead or missing after a powerful storm hit Oman on Saturday, May 26.
Gulfnews reports that least 10 persons were reported dead and 40 more missing as Cycle Mekunu, a Category 3 hurricane, batters southern Oman and eastern Yemen. The death and casualty toll is feared to rise as reports of missing persons come in.
Before making landfall in Oman, Mekunu brought devastation in Yemeni island of Socotra. Bringing strong winds of up to 185 kilometres an hour and torrential rains, Mekunu is one of the strongest cyclones to have hit the Arabian peninsula. It dumped an equivalent of two years worth of rains in just 24 hours, triggering floods in the streets of Salalah, Oman’s second largest city, which was most affected by the storm.
Thousands fled their homes for fears due to the rising water and have sought shelter on higher ground and in hotels reinforced with flood defence measures.
Philippine Ambassador in Oman, Narciso Castañeda, said that there are 49,000 Filipinos in Oman, including around 10,000 in Salalah. The DFA assures that it will continue to monitor the situation.
Meanwhile, the DFA also urged Filipinos in Saudi Arabia to prepare for a tropical cyclone expected to bring heavy rains in the western region late Saturday.
In a statement, the DFA said the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah has forwarded the advice to Filipinos, specifically in the Najran area where 8,000 Filipinos reside.