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Some 9 000 Ghanaians evacuated from 27 countries during lockdown

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More than 9 000 Ghanaians stranded abroad were evacuated into the country during the five-month lockdown and closure of the country’s airspace to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Ghana announced the closure of its borders on 22 March 2020.

According to local media reports on Monday, 14 September 2020, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration had, in a statement on Friday, 11 September 2020, announced the completion of the evacuation exercise. Moreover, the stranded persons were reportedly brought in from about 27 countries.

The countries include; Benin, Burkina Faso, China, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, India, Iraq, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Kenya, Kuwait, Mali, Oman, Qatar and Russian Federation. Other citizens are said to have been flown in from Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, The Gambia, Togo, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates (UAE), United Kingdom and United States of America.

The reports added that the completion of the evacuation exercise followed the opening of the Kotoka International Airport to commercial flights on at the beginning of the month on Tuesday, 1 September 2020.

“The government assisted and covered the cost of travel and quarantine of a number of Ghanaians, in particular those arriving from China, Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, UAE and all the evacuations undertaken within the West Africa region, including all students who arrived during the period,” the reports quoted the statement as saying.

-APA

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