President provided impetus to rescue Sri Lankans stranded in China | Daily News


President provided impetus to rescue Sri Lankans stranded in China

The rescue mission cabin crew at the Hilton
The rescue mission cabin crew at the Hilton

Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, was cited as being the major force behind Sri Lankan Airlines rescue mission to bring back the Sri Lankans stranded in Wuhan after the Coronavirus. Sri Lankan Airlines held a press conference on February 3, at the Colombo Hilton to thank all those involved in the mercy mission.

Sri Lankan Airlines Acting Chief Officer Service Delivery, Capt. Rajind Ranatunga said, “the mercy mission we undertook to bring home our own children from the epicenter of the Coronavirus took place under the directive of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.”

“Once we took charge of this initial task, we got clearance. I thank the Government of China for giving us clearance during this difficult time of that country. Everyone was requesting for clearance, but we were given clearance.”

“I would wish to thank the Secretary of Foreign Affairs Ravinatha Aryasinha and Chargé D’Affaires to China K.K. Yoganaadan.” He also thanked all other individuals who were involved in the administrative and international co-ordination for the rescue mission. Multiple clearances were required for the flight.

Ranatunga added, “All these people who travelled in this flight were volunteers. Captain Chaminda Zoysa and Anushka Jeewantha have children of their own. I salute you.”

The Engineering staff had to get off the Aircraft for maintenance. Ranatunga said, “all this was done in the name of bringing our own back to the country.”

Ranatunga said, “The final briefing was reminiscent of any final war attempt. If you are wondering how we protected them, we provided them with ebola kits.”

The Leaders of the rescue mission called on the media to currently focus on the mercy mission. The crew landed at the Mattala Airport on the return flight. The passengers were then taken by the Air Force to Diyatalawa to be monitored. Training and support were provided by the Armed Forces.


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