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Over 500 Vietnamese return home from the US, Taiwan

07:28 | 29/07/2020

Relevant agencies of Vietnam in the United States and Taiwan (China), national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines and low-cost carrier Vietjet on July 28 coordinated with competent agencies in the host countries to bring home over 600 stranded citizens while Vietnam continued to confirm new domestic cases of the coronavirus.

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over 500 vietnamese return home from the us taiwan
The plane repatriating over 280 Vietnamese citizens from the US at Van Don International Airport. Photo: VNA

The passengers included children under 18, elderly people, those with illnesses, workers with expired visas or labour contracts, stranded tourists, and students who have finished their learning but lack accommodation due to dormitory closure, and others with disadvantages.

The first flight, departing from San Francisco International Airport, carried more than 280 Vietnamese citizens, coming from different states in the US.

Vietnam’s representative bodies in the US actively assisted the citizens, many of whom had to move from distant places or needed special support. The Consulate General in San Francisco also sent its staff members to the airport to directly help them complete boarding procedures.

The Vietnam Economic-Culture Office in Taipei also actively supported 230 citizens in completing the necessary procedures prior to boarding.

Security, safety, and hygiene measures were strictly implemented throughout the flight.

Right after the plane landed at Van Don airport on the early morning, all people on board received check-ups and were sent to concentrated quarantine sites in line with regulations.

After landing at Cam Ranh International Airport in the south-central province of Khanh Hoa, all passengers from Taiwan and crew members had their body temperatures checked and were then quarantined.

over 500 vietnamese return home from the us taiwan
Inside the aircraft of Vietnam Airlines which is used for the flight bringing 219 stranded citizens home from Equatorial Guinea. Photo: Vietnam Airlines

On July 28 morning, doctors and nurses of the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases boarded national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines and left for Bata city of Equatorial Guinea to bring 219 stranded Vietnamese citizens home, VNA cited a representative of the airline.

The returning flight is due to arrive in Vietnam on July 29 afternoon.

Crew members were equipped with special protective clothing while separate zones and air purifiers set up in the airplane.

Since the first days of the pandemic combat, the Government leader has ordered flights to repatriate overseas Vietnamese citizens, and asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Vietnamese embassies and representative offices abroad to do their utmost in citizen protection.

According to Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Le Van Thanh, 16 of the 219 Vietnamese labourers in the host country tested positive for the coronavirus virus and 20 were suspected to have the virus late June. They have been quarantined and treated in line with local regulations.

The number of infections among the Vietnamese guest workers rose to 112 in early July.

Seven new domestic cases were confirmed on July 28 in Da Nang city and Quang Nam province, taking the total count in the country to 438 as of 6pm of July 28, according to the national steering committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control.

Meawhile, three COVID-19 patients were given the all clear on July 27 and one more on July 28, raising the number of recoveries to 369.

VNA also reported  that the Border Guard High Command of the northern mountainous province of Lang Son have arrested and launched criminal proceedings against two Vietnamese women alleged to have organised the illegal entry into Vietnam of nine foreigners. 

They received a call on July 26 from an unknown man asking them to illegally bring eight foreigners into Vietnam via the area around border marker 1219, which is overseen by the Chi Ma border gate guard station. They were to receive 250,000 VND (10.8 USD) for each successful entry.

over 500 vietnamese return home from the us taiwan
A notice board warning passengers to keep a distance of 2m at least when they have check-in for their flight in Hanoi-based Noi Bai International Airport. Photo: VNA

Hanoi authorities have ordered an estimated 15,000-20,000 local residents who recently returned from Da Nang to fill in health declarations, self-quarantine and cooperate with health officials for SARS-CoV-2 testing.

Nguyen Khac Hien, Director of the city’s Health Department, said the health sector would take samples for SARS-CoV-2 testing at least twice for people who returned to the city from foreign countries and quarantine them. More tests would be taken after a month if necessary.

Local residents were told to wear masks in crowded places and wash their hands with sanitiser.

All offices, agencies and enterprises in the city must have hand sanitiser and conduct temperature checks for everyone who enters, he said.

The city’s Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has adjusted its programmes and plans for tourism in the city. Some tourism activities that were planned for August will be postponed until further notice./.

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