Indian Embassy in Beijing expressed its gratitude to China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and local authorities in Hubei province and Wuhan for assisting the evacuation of Indian nationals from the epicentre of Coronavirus outbreak. Vikram Misri, the Indian Ambassador to Beijing, said that he was relieved on the safe return of Indian citizens from Wuhan.
Relieved to see AI 1349 return safely to #Delhi with 324 of our fellow citizens from #Wuhan in #China | Grateful to @MFA_China for their assistance as well as local authorities in #Hubei and @Wuhan | Thank you also to #AirIndia and our team in @EOIBeijing | Now for second flight. pic.twitter.com/rhJvBGMpYj— Vikram Misri (@VikramMisri) February 1, 2020
Air India flight carrying 324 Indian nationals, majority of who were students, from coronavirus-hit Wuhan landed in New Delhi on February 1. Indians who arrived at the Delhi airport will be taken to an Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) camp where they will be kept in isolation for 14 days under medical observation. Currently, the doctors are conducting coronavirus screening at the airport all the 324 Indian airports.
Another Air India flight is prepared to take off for Wuhan to evacuate remaining citizens who gave their consent to leave Hubei Province for the time being. Indian Embassy in Beijing urged all Indian nationals living in Hubei province to contact the embassy through hotlines if they intend to avail the next flight.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has now declared the new coronavirus outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). After the second meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the committee acknowledged that human-to-human transmission has occurred outside Wuhan and outside China.
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus congratulated the Chinese government for the ‘extraordinary measures’ it took to contain the virus, despite the severe social and economic impact those measures are having on the Chinese people. “We don’t know what sort of damage this coronavirus could do if it were to spread in a country with a weaker health system. We must act now to help countries prepare for that possibility," said Ghebreyesus during the press conference after the meeting.