File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar shared the information on Twitter
Under neighbourhood first policy, Indian airline Air India has rescued 7 citizens of Maldives along with 323 Indians from Wuhan, the epicentre of the SARS-like coronavirus.
The information was shared by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on twitter.
Maldives' Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid expressed gratitude for the kind gesture taken by the Indian government.
7 Maldivians in #Wuhan are on their way to Delhi on a special #AirIndia flight. Upon arrival they will be housed in Delhi for a period of quarantine. Deep gratitude to PM @narendramodi and EM @DrSJaishankar. Special thanks to Ambassadors @VikramMisri @sunjaysudhir and their teams— Abdulla Shahid (@abdulla_shahid) February 2, 2020
He said the initiative reflected ''historic ties of kinship between the two countries and synergy between the Neighbourhood First and India First policy''.
7 Maldivians along with 323 Indians are being evacuated to #Delhi from #Wuhan by a special @airindiain AI flight.— India in Maldives (@EoIMaldives) February 2, 2020
An action that reflects historic ties of kinship between us, &, synergy between #NeighbourhoodFirst & #IndiaFirst policies. @MEAIndia @MoFAmv @EOIBeijing@PMOIndia https://t.co/zmvhqkPmTL
This is the second Air India that was sent to Wuhan to rescue stranded Indian citizens from the epicentre of the novel virus.
However, the Chinese government took four days just to grant permission for the evacuation process.
It also expressed displeasure over the advisory issued by India in which it asked its citizens to refrain from travelling to China in order to prevent the deadly virus from spreading.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that '' World Health Organisation has not recommended any sort of restrictions regarding travel or trade with China''.
Beijing's envoy to New Delhi, Sun Weidong also tweeted about the matter.
At yesterday's briefing on the novel coronavirus outbreak, the WHO does not recommend travel or trade restrictions against China. We believe that India and other countries will respect this important recommendation,Wang Yi said.— Sun Weidong (@China_Amb_India) February 1, 2020
Wang Yi said that to address transnational public health challenges in this era of globalization, we need to stay objective and rational, and step up communication and coordination.— Sun Weidong (@China_Amb_India) February 1, 2020
Other than India, China has been dissuading US, France and other foreign countries from airlifting their citizens from China.
It fears that such a wide-scale evacuation of foreign nationals from its territory can adversely affect its reputation and undermine the credibility of its claim that is capable of containing the outbreak.
The virus which was detected in December has now spread to the United States, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Britain, India among other countries.
The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak a public health emergency.