LONDON, July 11. /TASS/. As many as 226 passengers left the UK for Moscow on board Aeroflot’s flight on Saturday, Kirill Sokolov-Shcherbachev, head of the consular department at Russia’s embassy to the UK, told TASS.
"As many as 226 people checked in. Among them are nine foreigners, of whom three are CIS citizens. We have worked in accordance with the established procedure of cooperation with the Foreign Ministry, Aeroflot, the Communications Ministry and other agencies," he said.
Among them are 30 transit passengers aboard the Saturday flight, who arrived in London from Australia, Hong Kong, Ireland, Canada and the United States.
Like the previous three flights, London - St. Petersburg on May 30, London - Moscow on June 13 and London - Moscow on June 26, this flight was organized by the Russian Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media that formed lists of passengers via the online state service registry in coordination with the Russian embassy in London, the Russian Foreign Ministry and diplomatic missions in other countries. The flight was available for Russian nationals from any region of the country.
Five flights have repatriated Russian nationals from London to Moscow so far since the lockdown restrictions were imposed.
On March 18, Russia shut down its borders for all foreigners to curb the spread of coronavirus. Furthermore, international passenger air travel, or both regular and charter flights, was fully suspended on March 27, but the carriers were allowed to operate evacuation flights returning passengers home.
On Friday, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova told reporters that the Russian government would start considering potential resumption of international flights after July 15.
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, 12,495,451 million people have been infected worldwide and 562,709 deaths have been reported.
According to the latest reports by the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care, the country has 288,133 confirmed cases, while the death toll stands at 44,650.
To date, 720,547 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 497,446 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 11,205 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.