LOOK | DFA places Guam, Northern Marianas under ‘Alert Level 1’

August 15, 2017 - 12:59 PM
Tourists frolic on the waters overlooking posh hotels in Guam's Tumon tourist district. (photo by Erik De Castro, Reuters)

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs has placed Guam and the Northern Marianas Islands under Alert Level 1, or the precautionary phase, and advised Filipinos living in the U.S. territories to “closely monito the news from reliable media outlets,” American authorities and the Philippine consulate general.

The alert, made on the recommendation of the Guam consulate, comes after North Korea announced it was drawing up plans to target Guam for missile strikes after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened the reclusive country with “fire and fury.”

Aside from Guam, where there are more than 40,000 Filipinos and which hosts American military bases, the alert also covers Saipan, Tinian and Rota.

In an earlier advisory, Consul General Marciano de Borja reminded Filipinos in the territories “to be ready to respond to any critical incident by having their passports and other documents readily on hand and to prepare a grab bag with essential supplies, including food and water.”

He said the alert “is not intended to cause undue alarm or panic” but “simply to encourage our citizens to be vigilant and to be prepared should any critical incident arise.”

The DFA has a four-level alert system.

Alert Level 1 is issued when there are signs of internal disturbance, instability, or external threat to the host country.

Alert Leve 2, or Restriction Phase, is issued when these situations pose threats to the life, security and property of Filipinos, who are asked to restrict non-essential movements, avoid public places, and prepare for evacuation. This also includes a ban on the deployment of new overseas Filipino workers to the affected countries or territories.

Alert Level 3 calls for voluntary repatriation and is issued when violence breaks out while Alert Leve 4 entails mandatory repatriation.