At 9:45am (local time), a civilian aircraft chartered by the Foreign Office carrying 83 British and 27 foreign nationals left Wuhan for the UK. The charter flight is estimated to land at RAF Brize Norton at 1:30pm (UK time).
A small number of medics were on the aircraft to provide support to passengers. The flight will continue on to Spain following the stopover in the UK, at which point EU nationals’ home countries will take responsibility for them.
It’s welcome news that our evacuation flight has now left Wuhan. We know how distressing the situation has been for those waiting to leave. We have been working round the clock to clear the way for a safe departure. The welfare of those trapped and public safety have been our overriding priorities. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab
The UK Government is just the latest foreign power chartering rights to the Wuhan province to repatriate its citizens. With the World Health Organization declaring the Conoravirus an international emergency, countries in an urgent scramble to bring their citizens home where they can receive medical treatment as needed.