Germans lived at the Indian airport for two months

Ein German lived in the transit area of ​​the airport in the Indian capital New Delhi for almost two months. The 41-year-old actually wanted to fly from Hanoi via New Delhi to Istanbul at the end of March, as an airport police officer told the German Press Agency. His onward flight was canceled due to India’s corona measures. The German embassy subsequently informed him several times about the possibility of returning to Germany, as the Foreign Office said. But the man did not want to go to Germany.

But he also did not apply for an Indian visa, said an airport security officer. However, he would not have received this because he told Indian authorities about criminal criminal records: “He told us that he was afraid of criminal prosecution in Germany and that he wanted to travel to Saudi Arabia via Turkey.” the Federal Criminal Police Office and the Federal Ministry of Justice did not want to comment on a possible criminal past of the airport permanent guest. However, German authorities had been in contact with Indian authorities because of the man.

Calls with family and friends via WiFi

So the man sat in the airport for weeks. He mostly used the airport wifi, made phone calls to family and friends, and read magazines and newspapers, said the airport security officer. Indian authorities had brought him food, drinks, toothpaste and fresh clothes. He slept on seats or on the floor. During this time, only return flights from different countries took place. In the early Tuesday morning, the man had finally left the airport for Amsterdam with a KLM return machine, as the airport spokesman said.

Germany and India have an agreement that makes it possible to extradite criminals. However, these are lengthy procedures that are usually only used in particularly severe cases. India could also have deported the man.

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Germans lived at the Indian airport for almost two months

Ein German lived in the transit area of ​​the airport in the Indian capital New Delhi for almost two months. The 41-year-old actually wanted to fly from Hanoi via New Delhi to Istanbul at the end of March, as an airport police officer told the German Press Agency. His onward flight was canceled due to India’s corona measures. The German embassy subsequently informed him several times about the possibility of returning to Germany, as the Foreign Office said. But the man did not want to go to Germany.

But he also did not apply for an Indian visa, said an airport security officer. However, he would not have received this because he told Indian authorities about criminal criminal records: “He told us that he was afraid of criminal prosecution in Germany and that he wanted to travel to Saudi Arabia via Turkey.” the Federal Criminal Police Office and the Federal Ministry of Justice did not want to comment on a possible criminal past of the airport permanent guest. However, German authorities had been in contact with Indian authorities because of the man.

Calls with family and friends via WiFi

So the man sat in the airport for weeks. He mostly used the airport wifi, made phone calls to family and friends, and read magazines and newspapers, said the airport security officer. Indian authorities had brought him food, drinks, toothpaste and fresh clothes. He slept on seats or on the floor. During this time, only return flights from different countries took place. In the early Tuesday morning, the man had finally left the airport for Amsterdam with a KLM return machine, as the airport spokesman said.

Germany and India have an agreement that makes it possible to extradite criminals. However, these are lengthy procedures that are usually only used in particularly severe cases. India could also have deported the man.

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How the Corona Crisis Feels for Germans Stranded in Pakistan

Aysha Ghauri (name changed by the editors) flew to Pakistan with her mother in early March to visit her grandmother. Both the 23-year-old woman and her mother are German citizens. However, both have not yet been considered for return flights.

Johanna Christner

So far there have been two return flights for German citizens in Pakistan. Did you register for the flights?

We registered long before the first flight. After the first flight went without us, we received an email saying there would be a second flight. My hope was that we would be considered for this return flight. I didn’t think we were still sitting here almost a month later, hoping to get home sometime.

And how is the communication currently on the part of the German embassy in Islamabad and the Federal Foreign Office?

We get different, confusing information. Sometimes it is said that a third return flight is planned, only it is unclear when. Then again we were informed that we no longer have to register on the portal for returns or update our registration. This is no longer necessary because there are no more flights. Everything seems very badly organized. I feel like I’m in the wrong movie.



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How do you perceive the corona crisis in Pakistan?

It’s actually like almost everywhere in the world. Shops are limited and mostly open for the purchase of food, almost everyone wears masks and gloves. But if we get infected here, we won’t get the same medical treatment as in Germany. I haven’t left the house in three weeks. It’s not worth it even for food.

Do you or your mother have previous illnesses?

No not that. But isn’t it enough that our current situation puts us under enormous psychological strain? I am mentally exhausted, every single day is difficult for me. A pandemic is bad enough. We are also in an unfamiliar environment. And Pakistan is not prepared for the corona pandemic.

But are there people with German citizenship or permanent residence permits who belong to high-risk groups and who were not considered for the return flights?

As far as I know, diabetics and people with heart problems are among those affected. In the meantime, a 61-year-old man from Offenbach has died of heart failure. At the latest you should have reacted. It is a stressful situation for me even without previous illnesses. I don’t want to imagine how people feel who are now running out of medication. Or how the family feels of the man who died.

How does it feel when the previous return measures are celebrated in Germany, but you are still stranded in another country?

It feels like a slap in the face. I am happy for everyone who was able to fly home. But I can’t share that praise – not if we’ve been stuck in Pakistan for almost a month.

Do you still have hope to get home before the measures are finished?

I had hope in the beginning, but now I’ve lost it. I don’t feel that much is being done for us. From April 21, there will be commercial flights again, but whether this will happen is questionable. The flight restrictions have already been extended twice. The prices of the flight tickets still offered are at least 1500 euros. The airlines cancel booked flights at short notice and without refunding the money because they do not get a landing permit in Pakistan. It seems like we’re being asked to sit out the pandemic and somehow come home on our own – even if that drives us to financial ruin.

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Almost 200,000 Germans brought back from abroad

DThe German government is gathering stranded holidaymakers all over the world in the Corona crisis and bringing them home. Most German travelers were still stuck in New Zealand. Now the return program, which had been stopped in the meantime, could start again. Also in South Africa, a plane took off to Germany in the late evening with around 300 vacationers, the German embassy announced. In Johannesburg, technical problems initially delayed the start of another aircraft with a similar number of passengers on board.

A total of 194,000 German tourists have been brought back so far, Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Friday after consulting his 26 EU counterparts. The Federal Foreign Office assumes that there are currently more than 40,000 German travelers abroad. The information is based on estimates, as the Ministry of the “Rheinische Post” announced. According to EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, 250,000 EU citizens are still stuck outside of Europe. 350,000 have been retrieved.

In the future, the EU states want to work more closely together on the return of holidaymakers stranded abroad. It was agreed that “we would coordinate the dates and the flights we book even more closely,” said Maas. Citizens of other European countries should fly in the aircraft of another country. Germany has already taken more than 3,000 citizens from other EU countries with it in the return campaigns because of the corona pandemic.

Difficult individual cases: Backpackers in the jungle or on remote islands

Since most package travelers are now back in Germany, it is now about more distant countries or states that are getting more complicated, the SPD politician said. “But there will also be cases where someone is in the Colombian jungle or is sitting on an island in the Philippines where, due to the curfew, no progress is possible. We also take care of these cases. ”However, it cannot be guaranteed that every individual case will be resolved.

The return flights have now started where the greatest problems have been so far, said Maas, citing New Zealand, India and South Africa. Germany started the campaign in mid-March in order to bring back German travelers from countries from which there are no longer regular flights, together with tour operators and airlines.

In New Zealand, a plane left Auckland for Vancouver late Friday afternoon (local time), according to Air New Zealand. There were 342 passengers on board. After a stop in Vancouver, the plane should reach Frankfurt early Saturday morning. According to the German embassy in Wellington, 12,000 Germans had registered for the return program in the Pacific state. There will be further evacuation flights from Auckland and Christchurch in the coming days.

A day-long tremor ends for the vacationers. “We are simply relieved and also confident that it will finally start someday,” said Sophia Münder-Führing from Hamburg, who had to wait in a motel in Christchurch. The Federal Foreign Office launched the return campaign from New Zealand on Saturday. After a first flight, all other planned flights were surprisingly stopped. The government in Wellington then announced on Thursday that it would allow other governments to fly out of the beach.

Austrian winter sports resort under quarantine

The return campaign for thousands of German and other European tourists began in South Africa on Friday. One machine took off in Cape Town with about 300 vacationers on board, while another similar number of passengers on board delayed the start in Johannesburg due to technical problems. German holidaymakers are currently being flown out of Thailand with special machines.

Tourists were also brought home by land. The German embassy in Vienna enabled 121 Germans to leave the quarantine in the Austrian winter sports resort of Sölden. As the embassy announced on Friday, the group was led to the Scharnitz / Mittenwald border crossing after a medical check in private cars and on buses provided by the embassy. Sölden has been in quarantine since March 17 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

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Federal Foreign Office plans return campaign from the Caribbean

FA solution is emerging for German sailors stuck in the Caribbean. This emerges from a letter that the German embassy in Trinidad and Tobago published on Thursday evening on its Facebook page. Accordingly, the Federal Foreign Office plans to bring the Germans stuck in the eastern Caribbean back home with the help of two charter flights.

Lorenz Hemicker

“The return campaign for the countries (…), in particular Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Antigua, Dominica, Grenada, St. Vincent and St. Lucia is imminent,” said Ambassador Ute König. The flights are to go from Barbados and to Frankfurt on April 7 and 8. Administrative details and further information on possible feeder flights would be emailed to Germans who had registered with the Federal Foreign Office. In addition to Germans, tourists from other EU countries should also be offered the opportunity to fly.

The plans for a sailing convoy across the Atlantic are not yet off the table. “It’s too early,” Johannes Bravidor told this newspaper on Friday. He is one of the group of German sailors who had considered this option last week due to the lack of alternatives for hundreds of Germans who are stuck in the Caribbean with their boat. They ran out of options because flights were canceled on almost all Caribbean islands, they had no residence permits, and food was becoming increasingly difficult to secure due to curfews.

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Individual return travel plans across the Atlantic became a life-threatening endeavor for many, because the experienced crews needed for such crossings could not land and the stopovers in Bermuda and the Azores that were urgently needed during the week-long journey appeared increasingly unrealistic due to new protective measures on site. The request for a support ship from the German Navy had been communicated to the F.A.Z. declined.

In the WhatsApp groups, in which the German sailors exchange ideas in the Caribbean, solutions for their boats have also emerged in recent days. In addition to piggybacking on cargo ships, group members also came up with the option of making sailing ships in the Caribbean so weatherproof that they have a good chance of surviving the hurricane season in the Caribbean that began in early June. At the same time, local sailing circles also said that one was skeptical whether all of the problems could be solved with the backward pull. It is not certain whether the support from the Federal Foreign Office will ultimately be sufficient to get the Germans on the plane in time, nor can boats be handed over in trusting hands in the short time to make them weatherproof or ready for loading.

The region was officially largely spared the corona virus for a long time. In the meantime, however, the number of infections is also growing rapidly here.

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Solution for Caribbean sailors? Berlin is planning a return campaign

FA solution is emerging for German sailors stuck in the Caribbean. This emerges from a letter that the German embassy in Trinidad and Tobago published on Thursday evening on its Facebook page. Accordingly, the Federal Foreign Office plans to bring the Germans stuck in the eastern Caribbean back home with the help of two charter flights.

Lorenz Hemicker

“The return campaign for the countries (…), in particular Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Antigua, Dominica, Grenada, St. Vincent and St. Lucia is imminent,” said Ambassador Ute König. The flights are to go from Barbados and to Frankfurt on April 7 and 8. Administrative details and further information on possible feeder flights would be emailed to Germans who had registered with the Federal Foreign Office. In addition to Germans, tourists from other EU countries should also be offered the opportunity to fly.

It is still unclear whether the plans for a sailing convoy across the Atlantic are off the table. A group of German sailors had considered this option last week due to the lack of alternatives for hundreds of Germans who were stuck in the Caribbean with their boat. They ran out of options because flights were canceled on almost all Caribbean islands, they had no residence permits, and food was becoming increasingly difficult to secure due to curfews.

F.A.Z. newsletter family

F.A.Z.-Newsletter Coronavirus

The whole world talks about the corona virus. All news and analysis about the spread and fight against the pandemic in your email inbox every day.

Individual return travel plans across the Atlantic became a life-threatening endeavor for many, because the experienced crews needed for such crossings could not land and the stopovers in Bermuda and the Azores that were urgently needed during the week-long journey appeared increasingly unrealistic due to new protective measures on site. The request for a support ship from the German Navy had been communicated to the F.A.Z. declined.

In the WhatsApp groups, in which the German sailors exchange ideas in the Caribbean, solutions for their boats have also emerged in recent days. In addition to piggybacking on cargo ships, group members also came up with the option of making sailing ships in the Caribbean so weatherproof that they have a good chance of surviving the hurricane season in the Caribbean that began in early June.

The region was officially largely spared the corona virus for a long time. In the meantime, however, the number of infections is also growing rapidly here.

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Seven Corona Falls on a German cruise ship off Australia

An On board a German cruise ship anchored off Australia, at least seven people have contracted the corona virus. The Bonn tour operator Phoenix said it was five passengers and two crew members of the “MS Artania”. None of the infected people are in a critical health condition. All guests should be flown out of Australia on Saturday with specially chartered planes. “We hope that it will work out that way. Talks with the German embassy and the Australian authorities are still ongoing, ”said a Phoenix spokeswoman on Thursday.

According to the company, the ship offers space for 510 crew members and 1200 – mostly German – passengers. The crew had asked the Australian authorities for help because several people had complained of breathing difficulties. As a result, Western Australian officials from the health authority boarded Fremantle on the west coast and examined them.

All passengers should stay in their cabins

The head of state of Western Australia, Mark McGowan, said on Thursday that the ship should leave Australian waters immediately. “His home port is actually in Germany.” If the seven sufferers had to come ashore for treatment, they would be taken to a facility of the defense forces, for example. The Australian government and Germany could then arrange a return flight after treatment.

According to the Phoenix spokeswoman, all passengers were asked to stay in their outside cabins. There the crew would provide them with food and drinks. “The captain informed everyone on board about the situation right from the start. The guests reacted with understanding and behaved sensibly. “

According to Roger Cook, Minister of Health for Western Australia, an elderly man was taken to a hospital aboard the ship for a life-threatening emergency – but it had nothing to do with the corona virus. As a precaution, he would be treated in a vacuum room at Fiona Stanley Hospital. “The ship remains under the captain’s control. We are only on site for medical assistance when needed, ”said Cook.

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