Top Philippine diplomat en route to oversee evacuation of Filipino workers from Libya

The Philippines' top diplomat is on his way to arrange the evacuation from Libya of thousands of Filipino workers, one of whom was beheaded and a nurse gang-raped amid the worsening turmoil.

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario says he is flying Thursday to Tunisia's Djerba Island near the Libyan border to help arrange the departure of about 13,000 Filipino workers from the Libyan cities of Benghazi and Misarata and the capital, Tripoli. The Filipinos will travel by ship to Malta.

A Filipino construction worker in Libya was beheaded two weeks ago and a nurse was abducted and gang-raped Wednesday.

The Philippines is among the world's top labor exporters with about a tenth of its 100 million people working abroad.