Since the announcement of the State of Disaster by President Cyril Ramaphosa, which saw South Africa implementing a lockdown on 26 March 2020, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) has facilitated the repatriation of over 3000 South Africans stranded abroad (by air).
Hundreds of others have returned through our land borders.
Today, about 275 South Africans who were stranded in the United States of America arrived back home, this afternoon. Others (also from the USA) will arrive back in South Africa on Tuesday, 05 May and Saturday, 09 May 2020.
Given the challenges we have been experiencing regarding the repatriation of our nationals, mainly, from Asian and the Middle East countries, the Department is pleased to announce that on Friday, 08 May 2020 about 600 South Africans from Bangkok, Thailand, Bali and Jakarta will be repatriated.
The majority of South Africans who were stranded in Europe and the United Kingdom have been repatriated.
A further 400 South Africans are stranded throughout Africa. We are working with various stakeholders to explore options on how best to facilitate their return.
Through our mission in Turkey, we continue to monitor the situation of the 50 students and 29 South African artists who have reached out to us. We are looking at possible ways of repatriating those who want to come back home. We want to appreciate the cooperation of the Turkish Government. They have given us assurances that all students will remain in their university residences as well as receive their daily meals.
We continue to explore solutions for the 29 Artists, and are pleased that the Turkish Government has assisted with food and other necessities they needed.
The Department wishes to assure all those who are still stranded abroad that it is doing everything it can to find ways to bring them home.
Media Statement, 03 May 2020
ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION