Indonesia says China cleared planes to evacuate citizens in virus-hit Wuhan

Indonesia says China cleared planes to evacuate citizens in virus-hit Wuhan

Indonesia Wuhan virus (1)
Health officials check the temperature of an Indonesian woman (centre) upon arrival at Sukarno-Hatta international airport in Tangerang on the outskirts of Jakarta on Jan 24, 2020, as airports across the region stay alert in response to a deadly virus in the Chinese city of Wuhan which has killed at least 26 and infected hundreds. (Photo: AFP/Adek Berry)  

JAKARTA: Indonesia’s foreign minister said on Friday that China had cleared planes to fly to the virus-hit Chinese province of Hubei to evacuate Indonesian citizens from the area.

The aircraft will depart within 24 hours, Retno Marsudi told reporters.

Indonesia has said at least 243 Indonesians are in parts of China declared to be in lockdown, the majority in Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak.

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According to a Jakarta Post report, the foreign minister had met with the Chinese Ambassador to Indonesia on Friday.

The Chinese envoy had given clearance for Indonesian aircraft to land in Hubei and evacuate the country’s stranded citizens, said the report.

"We have talked with Indonesian diplomats in Hubei province. In Wuhan, the (evacuation) process continues,” Ms Marsudi was quoted as saying.

The development came after President Joko Widodo on Thursday ordered the immediate repatriation of Indonesians trapped in Wuhan and the surrounding Hubei province.

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Source: Reuters/jt

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