Indonesians from Wuhan arrive in Batam, in quarantine for 14 days

  • ASEAN+
  • Sunday, 02 Feb 2020

Indonesians arriving from Wuhan are sprayed with antiseptic by medical officers at Hang Nadim Airport in Batam, Indonesia, on Sunday (Feb 2). They were transported to a quarantine zone on a remote island at the edge of the South China Sea, shortly after landing in Batam. - AP

JAKARTA: Indonesians evacuated from Wuhan and other cities in China arrived at Hang Nadim Airport in Batam, Riau Islands, on Sunday morning (Feb 2) and were immediately directed to passenger planes operated by the Indonesian Air Force to be airlifted to Natuna Island for quarantine.

Presidential spokesperson Fadjroel Rachman said the 245 Indonesians previously trapped in the locked-down city of Wuhan and other cities in Hubei province are in good health.

“All have been declared healthy according to World Health Organisation standards,” Fadjroel said in a statement on Sunday.

The evacuees got off the Batik Air Airbus A-330 airplane at 9.23 am in Wuhan, after landing at around 8.45am in Batam. They disembarked one by one, with long intervals.

Officers wearing hazmat suits checked on the passengers and escorted them out, Antara news agency reported.

The passengers underwent medical check-ups inside the Batik Air aircraft before boarding the planes that brought them to Natuna Island.

Batam Class I Port Health Office head Achmad Farchanny previously said that several health measures would be taken on route, such as temperature checks.

The Indonesian Military (TNI) has three planes to be used to carry the returnees to Natuna, namely a Hercules A-1315, a Boeing AI 7304 and Boeing A 7306.

Hang Nadim Airport operational director Maj Wardoyo said the Hercules airplanes could carry 130 people and each Boeing 100 people.

Fadjroel said that upon arriving, the 245 Indonesians would be observed at a military base in Natuna that is equipped with hospital facilities.

Previously, the Health Ministry’s head of the emerging infectious diseases subdirectorate, Endang Budi Hastuti, said they must be quarantined for at least 14 days, which would allow authorities to observe them throughout the virus' estimated incubation period.

Meanwhile, Indonesia will temporarily stop flights to and from mainland China starting Wednesday and bar visitors who have been in China for 14 days from entering or transiting in the Southeast Asian country, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said on Sunday.

The government will stop a policy to give free visa to Chinese nationals and also stop issuing visas on arrival for those who live in mainland China, she said, asking Indonesians not to travel to China amid the coronavirus epidemic. - The Jakarta Post/Asian News Network

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Indonesians , Return Home , Wuhan , Quarantine , Batam


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