CEAC – “Gov't Must Charter Airlines To Fly Stranded Kiwis Home."
NZ Gov't must charter airlines to fly stranded Kiwis home just as British Gov’t has agreed to do here today; https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-52099252
BBC 30th March 2020.
Coronavirus: Foreign Office links up with airlines to fly stranded Britons home
Dominic Raab said charter flights will be arranged for countries where commercial flights have stopped.
Tens of thousands of Britons stranded abroad by the coronavirus pandemic will be flown home under a new arrangement between the government and airlines.
BA, Virgin and Easyjet are among airlines working with the government to fly Britons back to the UK.
The government has also pledged £75m to charter special flights to bring home UK nationals from countries where commercial flights are unavailable.
The number of people who have died with the virus in the UK has reached 1,408.
Speaking at the government's daily coronavirus briefing, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said an "unprecedented" number of UK travellers were trying to get home "from young backpackers to retired couples on cruises".
"We are talking about hundreds of thousands of people travelling around the world," he said.
Under the new arrangement, airlines would be responsible for getting stranded passengers home where commercial routes remain an option.
Where commercial routes do not exist, government financial support will enable special charter flights - operated by the partner airlines and others - to fly to priority countries to bring back UK residents.
Mr Raab said priority would be given to the most vulnerable - including the elderly or those with pressing medical needs - and also to countries where there are large numbers of British tourists trying to return to the UK.
Labour's shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry criticised the plans as "just more of the same", and called for "a fresh, comprehensive and fully-funded strategy to bring our British nationals home". Un-quote;