More than 340 Vietnamese citizens returned to the Southeast Asian country from the Netherlands and France on Sunday morning, as part of the government’s plan to bring home citizens stranded overseas due to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
A plane operated by national carrier Vietnam Airlines departed from Hanoi, stopped in Frankfurt, Amsterdam, and Paris — cities in Germany, the Netherlands, and France, respectively — before landing in Ho Chi Minh City.
As part of the outbound flight, the aircraft also transported about 330 foreigners to Germany and the Netherlands.
According to a Vietnam Airlines representative, a Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner was used to operate the trips, which took a total of 32 hours.
It was also the first time Vietnam Airlines had operated a flight across the three European countries.
The Vietnamese passengers included children under the age of 18, the elderly, people with medical issues, pregnant women, university students, stranded tourists, and people whose visas had expired but could not leave the countries.
All of them had had their body temperature checked before boarding and were brought to quarantine camps after their arrival in Ho Chi Minh City.
Previously on Saturday evening, a flight operated by budget carrier Vietjet Air brought home 240 Vietnamese citizens stranded in Myanmar because of the COVID-19 epidemic.
Between May 25 and June 1, more flights are expected to bring home Vietnamese citizens from Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, and New Zealand.
Vietnam has recorded 325 COVID-19 patients so far, with 267 having recovered. No deaths associated with the disease have been reported in the country to date.
No new community infections have been documented in the Southeast Asian country for 39 days.