FM spokesperson: Citizen protection is central task in pandemic

(VOVWORLD) - Vietnam successfully contained the epidemic while developing the economy in 2020, said Vietnamese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang at a press conference in Hanoi on Thursday. 
FM spokesperson: Citizen protection is central task in pandemic - ảnh 1Vietnamese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang

Hang said Vietnam’s diplomatic activities were successful while citizen protection in the epidemic was a top priority. In 2020, Vietnam conducted nearly 300 flights bringing home more than 80,000 Vietnamese citizens around the world despite coronavirus spreading worldwide. According to Hang, citizen protection continues a central task in 2021 but repatriation of Vietnamese citizens overseas will be conducted within the country’s capacity.

'The repatriation of citizens must be decided with consideration of the epidemic in the world and in the country as well as Vietnam’s quarantine capacity. As new variants of the virus are spreading quickly in some countries, on January 5, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc issued a restriction of inbound flights until the lunar new year holiday. Vietnam will only allow in necessary flights that have been approved on a case-by-case basis by agencies along with approval from the PM himself.'

Hang said despite the overseas Vietnamese high demand to return home for Tet, repatriation will be decided based on the extent of necessity, regulations of disease prevention, and quarantine capacity in the country.

Concerning the seizure of 2 Vietnamese crew members on South Korean-flagged tanker seized by Iran on January 4,  Hang said relevant diplomatic agencies of Vietnam in South Korea and Iran have contacted local agencies asking for safety of Vietnamese crewmembers. They are all in stable health conditions. Hang added that Iran allowed Vietnam’s diplomatic representatives to meet the crewmembers next Monday.