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Repatriation of Malaysians affected by Covid-19 situation not urgent as before, says deputy minister

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Datuk Kamarudin Jaafar said Wisma Putra had managed to bring home more than 26,000 Malaysians stranded overseas following flight problems and travel restrictions. ― Picture by Mukhriz Hazim
Datuk Kamarudin Jaafar said Wisma Putra had managed to bring home more than 26,000 Malaysians stranded overseas following flight problems and travel restrictions. ― Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 15 — The repatriation of Malaysians abroad affected by the Covid-19 situation is not as urgent as before, said Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar.

He said Wisma Putra had managed to bring home more than 26,000 Malaysians stranded overseas following flight problems and travel restrictions.

“The current situation is not as urgent as it used to be. It can be said that almost all Malaysians who wanted to come (return) have been brought home.

“So there is (now) a relatively small number of those who have just decided to return, this will be constantly monitored,” he told reporters after handing over a check for RM1 million as contribution by the Malaysian government to the Lebanese Embassy at Wisma Putra, here today.

According to Kamarudin, a group of tabligh members in India were still in the process of being brought back as they had to undergo legal process in India for visa abuse.

‘Wisma Putra through embassies and consulates in India is managing this matter. Once the court case is completed, we will bring them back,” he said.

Last May, Kamarudin was reported to have said that a total of 55 Malaysians who participated in the tabligh gathering in New Delhi in March were accused of abusing their visas.

In another development, Kamarudin said Wisma Putra would inform the Chinese government of its stance if it was proven that a Chinese company collected data on 1,400 Malaysians.

An international news agency reported that a Chinese firm with reported links to military and intelligence networks in Beijing had collected data on 1,400 Malaysians

At today’s event at Wisma Putra, Kamarudin presented a mock-cheque to the Lebanese Ambassador to Malaysia, George Bitar Ghanem for humanitarian relief assistance following the explosion tragedy in Beirut on August 4.

Kamarudin said Malaysia was deeply saddened with the massive explosion which left 190 people dead and more than 6,500 injured.

“The tragedy has caused great destruction of property and left 300,000 people homeless,” he said.

The contribution from the National Disaster Relief Trust Fund will be channelled to more than 10,000 families affected by the tragedy. — Bernama

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