DFA Clarifies Removal of Stamp “Not Valid For Travel To Iraq” in Philippine Passports

05 August 2011-The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) would like to clarify that the removal of the stamp "Not Valid for Travel to Iraq" in Philippine passports does not translate to lifting of the deployment ban to this country.

The discontinuation of the practice of placing this stamp on Philippine passports is not tantamount to allowing the travel to Iraq for employment purposes. There are countries in which deployment bans have been imposed such as Nigeria, Lebanon, Afghanistan and Jordan, and the Philippine passports are not made to reflect these.

The DFA will continue to adhere to the Department of Labor and Employment's policy.

Earlier, the DFA sent a letter to the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) stating that effective 01 July 2011, all regular Philippine passports it issues will no longer bear the stamp "Not Valid for Travel to Iraq" in the limitations page.  The removal of the stamp was a subsequent decision by concerned government agencies that the function of informing OFWs of the employment ban will be adequately served by having the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) issue travel advisories and labor deployment bans of OFWs.