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Jakarta Post

China plans to repatriate tourists stranded in Bali

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, February 6, 2020   /   04:23 pm
China plans to repatriate tourists stranded in Bali Airport officials call passengers to board a Chinese Eastern Airlines flight to Shanghai, China, at Soekarno Hatta Airport, Tangerang, Banten, on Wednesday. It was the last flight to depart after the Indonesian government suspended travel to and from mainland China in response to the spread of the novel coronavirus. (Antara/Muhammad Iqbal )

The Chinese government plans to repatriate its citizens from Bali following the recent cancellation of all flights to and from mainland China, Bali airport authority officials have said.

Flights to and from China have been suspended since Wednesday at Ngurah Rai International Airport as part of government measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, stranding thousands of Chinese tourists on the island.

Read also: Thousands of Chinese tourists stranded in Bali as govt halts flights to and from China

Bali Airport Authority head Elfi Amir said the details of the plan – including the number of Chinese nationals to be repatriated from Bali and the number of airplanes to be used for the repatriation – were still uncertain.

“We have yet to receive an official notice. We’ve only received verbal information. The permits will be processed in Jakarta,” Elfi told kompas.com on Thursday morning. “In principle, [the airport authority] supports [the move].”

He said the authority had coordinated with related parties to ensure that the technicalities of the plan would be properly addressed.

“We last heard that [China] was still preparing the required permits and that Indonesia would support the repatriation of Chinese nationals,” Elfi said.

A Boeing 777 owned by China Eastern Airlines is due to land at I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport on Friday, he said.

“It will depart for Denpasar from Shanghai and then go to Wuhan,” he said. (rfa)