Vietnamese stranded abroad assisted to fly home: spokeswoman

Vietnamese representative agencies in foreign countries are closely coordinating with international airlines and local authorities to ensure health care as well as essential supplies for Vietnamese stranded at international airports abroad, spokeswoman of the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry Le Thi Thu Hang said.

Speaking at the ministry’s regular press conference in Hanoi on March 26, Hang said the representative agencies have also helped the stranded passengers seek temporary shelters and suitable flights to Vietnam.

According to the spokeswoman, from March 21-25, the ministry requested the representative agencies to join hands with authorities both at home and abroad to assist about 800 Vietnamese citizens to fly home safely.

But there are still around 40 Vietnamese citizens stuck at international airports in foreign countries, she added.

The complex developments of the COVID-19 pandemic have forced many countries and territories to restrict or stop international flights, leaving a large number of Vietnamese citizens stranded at their airports.

Therefore, the foreign ministry has continuously updated Vietnamese abroad on relevant information and warned them against travelling, especially trips to different countries and Vietnam.

Overseas Vietnamese have also been advised to observe precautionary measures set by their host countries, keep themselves updated on regulations of the countries and airlines, and prepare necessary papers for flights, particularly health certificates, she said.

Those who lack essential papers or are subject to changed regulations of foreign countries and territories, and airlines may get stuck at international flights abroad. Hang said.

The foreign ministry has asked the representative agencies to partner with competent agencies, international airports and airlines in foreign countries to popularise Vietnam’s entry policy that allows Vietnamese citizens to return home without any certificates by the representative agencies, the spokeswoman stressed.

In case of emergency, it is recommended to contact citizen protection hotlines posted on the websites of the Consular Department under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Vietnamese representative agencies abroad, or the citizen protection hotline, Hang added.

Also at the press conference, she said no COVID-19 infections have been recorded among staff at Vietnamese representative agencies abroad so far.

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