Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) announced on Feb. 7 that it was in talks with the Chinese authorities to mount a second evacuation flight from Wuhan, the epicentre of the 2019 novel coronavirus (nCoV).
174 Singaporeans arrived at Changi Airport on Feb. 9
On Sunday (Feb. 9) morning, MFA has confirmed that a total of 174 Singaporeans and their family members arrived safely at Changi Airport from Wuhan.
They were on board Scoot flight TR5121.
The flight also brought some Chinese nationals back home to Wuhan.
MFA Consular Officers and medical personnel had accompanied the flight to facilitate the operations.
According to MFA, the returning passengers underwent medical screening upon arrival and those with fever or respiratory symptoms were taken to designated hospitals for further examination.
The remaining passengers will be quarantined for 14 days.
Singapore worked closely with the PRC government
In its statement, MFA said:
"The Singapore government expresses its appreciation to the PRC government, Hubei provincial government, Wuhan city government, and the PRC Embassy in Singapore for facilitating their safe return."
Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat uploaded a Facebook post on Feb. 9 to also send his gratitude to the PRC government, as well as the MFA officers and Scoot airline crew involved in the operation.
Heng went on to explain that before the plane took off on Saturday (Feb. 8), Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan handed over diagnostic test kits and medical supplies to the PRC Ambassador to Singapore.
This was part of Singapore’s contribution to China’s effort to fight the nCoV.
"Infectious diseases transcend borders, and Singapore will work closely with China and the international community to overcome this global challenge."
You can read his full Facebook post here:
Not the first evacuation flight
This is the second evacuation flight that brought back Singaporeans from Wuhan.
On Jan. 30, 2020, 92 Singaporeans returned from Wuhan, also via a Scoot flight.
Some of these Singaporeans have been tested positive for the nCoV.
They are the 15th, 17th, 22nd and 23rd confirmed cases.
As of Saturday (Feb. 8), Singapore has a total of 40 confirmed cases.
Top images from MFA.