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CM meets MCA to discuss repatriation of Gib residents from Morocco

The Chief Minister and the Moroccan Community Association met this week to discuss the difficulties faced by Gibraltar residents unable to travel back from Morocco due to restrictions arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Fabian Picardo and the MCA’s Ali Douissi met to assess what option were open to get these residents home.

“Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar is fully committed to the repatriation of all Gibraltar residents currently in Morocco and unable to travel to Gibraltar,” Mr Picardo said.

“Yesterday, I discussed the current situation with Mr Douissi and emphasised that the Government is currently exploring all avenues and will engage with the relevant authorities to ensure the repatriation of all Gibraltar residents from Morocco.”

At the height of the pandemic last year, many Gibraltar residents were ferried across the Strait of Gibraltar in carefully-planned operations coordinated by the Gibraltar Government, the UK Government and the Moroccan authorities.

Earlier this month, Morocco detected its first two cases of the Indian variant of the coronavirus whose contacts were isolated to avoid contagion.

Morocco has banned flights with most countries and kept a night curfew in place to counter the spread of new variants.

The North African kingdom has confirmed 511,912 cases of COVID-19 and registered nearly 9,032 deaths.

It has rolled out vaccinations more rapidly than its neighbours, inoculating 5.1 million people to date.

The variant, B.1.617, has reached at least 17 countries, from Britain and Iran to Switzerland, sparking global concern and spurring several to close their borders to people travelling from India.

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