MALAYSIANS stranded in Turkey and Montenegro are scheduled to return Friday on special flights, and will undergo medical checks including a mandatory 14-day quarantine before earning their clean bill of health.
The Turkish Government, Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar said, granted the special approval for an aircraft from Malaysia to land in Istanbul, and return with the stranded Malaysians and those encountering difficulties.
“They include tourists or short-term visitors and other Malaysians affected by restrictions imposed by the Turkish authorities to control the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic,” the Deputy Foreign Minister announced on Thursday when briefing on developments of Malaysians overseas.
On Malaysian students abroad, Kamarudin urged them to obey advice issued by Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to stay put where they are.
“Parents and students are asked to stay calm and not panic; take care of their health and stay in touch with their Malaysian representatives,” Bernama quoted him.
The Malaysia government, he added, had agreed to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina who were severely affected by the lack of equipment and medicine in the face of the pandemic.
“The contribution was sent via a special Air Asia flight which landed safely in Sarajevo at 10.30pm (local time) on Wednesday.
“The government of Bosnia and Herzegovina expressed its appreciation for the relief aid and agreed to donate anti-malaria drugs to help Malaysia address Covid-19,” he said.
Kamarudin added the Montenegro government as well as Bosnia and Herzegovina also helped Wisma Putra to bring back eight Malaysians stranded in Montenegro, also expected to arrive Friday.
Wisma Putra was also in collaboration with relevant agencies was coordinating assistance and donations to be sent to Palestinians affected by Covid-19.
On the 17 Malaysian citizens detained in India over alleged visa violations, Kamarudin said discussions were underway with the Foreign Office in New Delhi.
Malaysia diplomats there were trying to ascertain the problems as there were several alleged infringements.
“Our High Commission reported the Malaysians were detained under India’s National Disaster Management Act (2005), Foreigners Act (1946) and the India Penal Code,” Kamarudin explained.
Wisma Putra remained concerned and would ensure those detained were in good health.
Kamarudin also explained that 191 Malaysian Tabligh pilgrims remain under quarantine in India.
Wisma Putra assisted by Malaysia representatives in India was constantly monitoring issues of Malaysia pilgrims under quarantine in hospitals or special quarantine centres.
In an effort to facilitate the return of Malaysians stranded, Wisma Putra is still awaiting the approval of a flight to take Malaysians out of Chennai.
“The flight was originally scheduled for April 14. As such, Wisma Putra and the Malaysian High Commission in New Delhi will continue to negotiate with the Government of India to enable this flight to be implemented in the near future.
“The Malaysian Consulate General in Chennai has also provided the necessary consular assistance including hotel and food and drinks to all those affected by the situation,” Kamarudin said.
To date, the government had successfully ferried home 2,873 Malaysians stranded in India on 21 special charter flights.
On Malaysians in Africa, Kamarudin said four Malaysians were stranded in N’Djamena, Chad, since March 19 following the closure of N’Djamena airport on March 18.Effort
Efforts were underway to get them back from Chad, including the option of a special charter flight that is being planned to ferry Malaysians home from several other African countries.
Kamarudin told Bernama several factors such as unstable security situations and logistics caused the proposed travel by road from N’Djamena, Chad to Abuja, Nigeria to be ruled out due to the distance.
Eighty-one Malaysians who were stranded in Sri Lanka will also return following an agreement between both countries.