Peter Aldous questions Foreign Secretary about people stuck overseas

24th March 2020

Following the Foreign Secretary's statement on efforts to assist British citizens abroad to return home, Peter Aldous highlights concerns about constituents stuck in Bali, Peru, New Zealand and on the Coral Princess.

Peter Aldous MP speaking in the House of Commons, Mar 2020, UK nationals overseas

I commend the Foreign Secretary for his statement. At present, I have constituents stuck in Bali, Peru, New Zealand and on the Coral Princess. May I just highlight a couple of issues? Commercial flights in New Zealand are currently collapsing like a stack of dominoes. With the Coral Princess currently docked in Rio, it also looks as if my constituents will not be able to disembark and will be on that ship for another two and a half weeks.

I thank my hon. Friend for his comments. I have addressed the situation in New Zealand at some length. We are of course looking at that as a matter of urgency. The big thing for getting people back from Australia and New Zealand is going to be the international hubs; I hope that he has been reassured by the reassurances that I secured from the Singaporean Foreign Minister first thing this morning. My hon. Friend also asked about the Coral Princess cruise ship. Our embassy in Brasilia is working with the Ministry there and the cruise operator to secure permission for the ship to dock at Rio in order to take advantage of the onward flights available to London. Some British nationals have already got places on board confirmed flights. We are doing as much as we can logistically to support them, and to get them and the other nationals home.

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