PETALING JAYA: The 131 Malaysian students who have chosen to remain Yemen have been strongly urged to reconsider their decision to stay in the war-torn country.
"Again, I would like to urge Malaysians who want to stay in Yemen, still wanting to stay there to reconsider their decision," said Defense Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein (pic) in a press statement Tuesday.
He said 131 students registered with the Malaysian embassy in Yemen chose to stay eventhough aid agencies warned of a growing humanitarian crisis including food shortages as Saudi-led warplanes hit rebel positions for a third consecutive week as rival forces clashed.
The statement also said that 382 Malaysians students have been brought home to date by the Malaysian Government.
"I would like to thank all the authorities who have worked hard to ensure the safety of the students and bringing back them to Malaysia safely.
On Tuesday, 45 students left Muscat, Oman on a flight back to Malaysia. They are expected to arrive at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at 8.50pm Tuesday.
In Hadramawt, Hishammuddin said five buses were transporting 179 students to Salalah.
He said this would be the last group coming out from Hadramawt.
In Aden, Hishammuddin said 67 students together with students from Indonesia and Thailand reached safely in Djibouti at 11am (Malaysian time) Tuesday.
"All of them are healthy but tired because they were on the boat for 15 hours. The Malaysian team there is helping all the students and have provided the facilities for them to rest," he said.
The 67 students will board a Hercules C130 plane from Djibouti to Jeddah, and thereon to Malaysia, via a commercial flight.
Hishammuddin also said his officers had spoken to the Education Ministry's Islamic studies department and said the students would be able to continue their studies in Malaysia.
"These students will have to apply with the Education Ministry to continue their studies in religious schools, particularly Government Assisted Religious School that are available throughout the nation.
"However, this application is subject to regulations set by the Education Ministry," he said.