SOME 66 Filipino tourists have returned home safely after a 6.7 magnitude earthquake hit Hokkaido in northern Japan late last week, the Philippine government has announced.
The Department of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that aside from 26 tourists who were rescued last Thursday, another tour group made up of 40 Filipinos sought help from the Philippine Embassy in Tokyo, GMA News reported.
According to Jose C. Laurel, the Philippine ambassador to Japan, all 66 Filipinos were safe and had received assistance in re-booking flights back to the Philippines.
The DFA said the two tour groups flew from Hokkaido to Tokyo on Saturday afternoon before getting a flight to Manila.
Laurel said electricity had been restored in 90% of Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido, while transport services were getting back to normal. Domestic and international flights had resumed at Chitose Airport, as had operations of Shinkansen “bullet” trains.
The Embassy had confirmed with local authorities that there were no Filipinos among the injured and they continued to monitor the 1,800 members of the Filipino community in Sapporo and other areas in Hokkaido that were affected by the earthquake.