The Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that 46 Romanian citizens and 24 European and third-country nationals, temporarily stranded in South Africa following the cancellation of some flights, left by plane from Johannesburg at 03:45. Another 7 Romanian citizens who are in Cape Town failed to board the repatriation flight.
“The special flight organized at the initiative of the Romanian Government for the repatriation of Romanian citizens temporarily stranded in South Africa took off from Johannesburg at 03.54 (local time / Romanian time), following the successful completion of all necessary procedures and formalities, the aircraft is expected to land in Bucharest around 15.30 (Romanian time). The list of passengers who boarded the plane that took off, developed as a result of the active steps of the MFA, through the Romanian Embassy in Pretoria, includes the following 70 people: 46 Romanian citizens (including the sports delegation of CSM Baia Mare), 18 European citizens (10 Bulgarian citizens, 4 Spanish citizens, 3 Polish citizens, 1 Hungarian citizen) and 6 third-country nationals (4 Georgian citizens, 1 Australian citizen, 1 New Zealand citizen – these are part of the team of athletes and the Grand SCM having residence in Romania).”
The Romanian Foreign Ministry also said that seven Romanian citizens who are Cape Town could not manage to get on board, either because they could not come to Johannesburg in due time, or because they did not take the PCR anti-Covid tests in due time. “The representatives of the Romanian Embassy in Pretoria are staying in contact with these citizens and will continue efforts to support them in the view of identifying other transport solutions to Romania in the near future,” MFA explained.
Moreover, the aircraft that is bringing those 46 Romanians from South Africa will land on Base 90, not on Henri Coanda/ Otopeni Airport, as it had been initially announced. The measure has been taken due to the infection risk amid fears related the new coronavirus variant, Omicron.
The Government asked the Army to take over the Tarom plane, as it was decided that there would be a too high risk to allow passengers to pass through the Arrivals terminal on the airport. The aircraft is due to land at 16:27.
The citizens returning from South Africa will go to a triage area by buses, where public health workers will test them. Then, they will stay under quarantine for 14 days.
As for the rugby players from Baia Mare, they will be taken over from the military base by a smaller Tarom plane, which will take them to Baia Mare.