Whanganui River, New Zealand. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

In the second such incident in less than a week, a Filipino man has drowned while swimming with friends in a river on New Zealand’s north island.

The Department of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that on Wednesday night, the 20-year-old Filipino was swimming with friends in the Whanganui River, 150 kilometers northwest of Wellington. The victim, whose identity was not disclosed, suddenly went under and drowned.

“This is the second drowning involving a Filipino in a week and the third since October,” the DFA said.

On Friday afternoon, Filipino student Kent Espinosa, 26, was swimming with his friends at Whangarei Falls in Northland when he drowned. Police were called to the area and a search and rescue operation was conducted. Espinosa’s body was recovered on Saturday.

Ambassador to New Zealand Jesus Gary Domingo said the Philippine Embassy in Wellington will hold town hall meetings to promote better water safety awareness among members of the Filipino community.

Read: Filipino student drowns near waterfall in New Zealand

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