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Canada Coronavirus: Air Canada flight carrying Canadians from Morocco lands in Montreal

07:10  22 march  2020
07:10  22 march  2020 Source:   globalnews.ca

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ADVISORY TO CANADIANS IN MOROCCO : @ AirCanada will operate a flight tomorrow. Canada -U.S. land border closes to all non-essential travel. Coronavirus : B.C. announces 77 new Global Affairs Canada would not say how many Canadians have reached out for help getting back

An Air Canada flight carrying Canadians will land in Montreal from Morocco . Self-isolation directives have turned Montreal into a ghost town. On Friday, Quebec City police arrested a woman who had tested positive for the coronavirus

a black sign with white text: The Air Canada is seen on an aircraft at a hangar at Toronto Pearson International Airport in Mississauga, Ont., February 9, 2017. Air Canada is cancelling all flights to Italy starting Wednesday, following the lead of European carriers that have halted service to a country now under nationwide lockdown to contain the new coronavirus. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch The Air Canada is seen on an aircraft at a hangar at Toronto Pearson International Airport in Mississauga, Ont., February 9, 2017. Air Canada is cancelling all flights to Italy starting Wednesday, following the lead of European carriers that have halted service to a country now under nationwide lockdown to contain the new coronavirus. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch

A special Air Canada flight has landed in Montreal, bringing 444 Canadians home from Morocco as borders shut down around the world amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The airline announced on Friday that it would fly an aircraft with 450 seats out of Casablanca to Montreal.

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READ MORE: Coronavirus: Air Canada to fly Canadians home from Morocco Saturday

Global Affairs Canada is expected to coordinate local arrangements for the Canadians to return home, where they will then have to self-isolate for 14 days.

Any Canadians on the flight also underwent a health screening prior to boarding.

Morocco suspended all international flights out of the country recently. The country has seen 74 confirmed cases and three deaths as of March 21, according to the World Health Organization.

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Canada 's Chief Public Health Officer of Canada is in close contact with provincial and territorial Chief Medical Officers of Health to ensure that any On January 22, 2020, Canada implements screening requirements related to COVID-19 for travellers returning from China to major airports in Montréal

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On Friday, Canada's foreign affairs minister had urged Canadians in Morocco to book a seat on the flight, which had to be paid for, unlike the repatriation flights for Canadians who were stuck on cruise ships overseas.

The federal government has a program where loans of $5,000 per person are available to those overseas. The funds can be used for flights and accommodations.

Canadians registered with the Repatriation of Canadians Abroad program had received an email Friday outlining the cost of the flight, which was $1,272 plus tax per passenger, with tickets open to Canadian citizens and permanent residents only.

READ MORE: ‘Help us:’ Canadians stuck abroad ask the feds to send help amid coronavirus pandemic

On Saturday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said travel restrictions in place around the world mean not every Canadian would be able to come home immediately.

He did mention the Air Canada flight that has now brought home hundreds of Canadians, and also named Peru and Spain as two potential countries from which Canada was working with airlines to bring home stranded citizens.

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An ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a novel infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)

"We are going to ask people to stay safe, make smart choices and do the best they can in a situation that is unprecedented, exceptional and very difficult," Trudeau said.

On Saturday night, Minister of Foreign Affairs François-Philippe Champagne tweeted that Canada is working with airlines to figure out repatriation from Peru, Spain, and Morocco.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Canada working with commercial airlines to repatriate stranded citizens

“We are working with Canadian airlines to have commercial flights in coming days to bring Canadians home in these countries,” he said.

Meanwhile, WestJet says it has 34 repatriation flights planned to bring home Canadians from around the world between March 23 and 25.

-- With files by Reuters, Global News reporter Sean Boynton

Coronavirus cases identified among passengers on nine Okanagan flights .
Saturday evening the Kelowna International Airport notified the public that an air traveler from earlier this month had tested positive for COVID-19.The most recent impacted flight was WestJet flight WS3343 from Calgary to Kelowna on March 17.

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